BETSY MINEKO YAMACHIKA SAKATABETSY MINEKO YAMACHIKA SAKATA 84, of Kailua, passed peacefully on September 20, 2015 surrounded by family. A loving wife, mother, grandmother, and sister, Betsy also accomplished much in her professional and leisure pursuits. Like many women of her time, she started out as an elementary school teacher, but Betsy went on throughout her career to challenge the gender stereotypes and discrimination of the day. After rising through the ranks of the Department of Education, she earned her masters degree and went on to a distinguished career at Kapiolani Community College and the University of Hawaii. Betsy's lifelong contribution to education was recognized last year when her peers selected her as one of the fifty most influential individuals during the first fifty years of the University of Hawaii Community Colleges. After retirement, Betsy spent much of her time sharing her knowledge about water gardening. She popularized water gardens in Hawaii through her work at Ala Moana Center, the Honolulu Academy of Arts, and in backyards across the state. Renown around the world in this field, she was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the International Water Lily and Water Gardening Society in 2001. In 2002 Betsy was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. She never let her affliction diminish her spirit or character; nor will it cloud our memories of her and her legacy. Her husband Seiji, sons Jon and Ross, brother Raymond, and two granddaughters, Lauren and Dayna, survive Betsy. Donations in her memory are suggested to the Alzheimer's Association. Private services held.
Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased