Harry Kiyoshi Nagata left this earth gently at age 97 years young on Saturday March 2, 2019 at his Vineyard Valley MHP home in Saint Helena CA. Harry was a long-time resident of Fresno CA when he and his wife, Jean, moved to the Napa Valley in December 2015 to begin a new adventure.
Harry was born on August 18, 1921 in Orosi CA to Frank Kumagoro Nagata and Oito Kinoshita of Wakayama Prefecture Japan. The family moved to Fresno and he graduated from Central Union High School in 1939. Harry married Jean Sakiko Kumashiro on November 12, 1949. The happy couple enjoyed raising three children on their vegetable and almond farm property in Fresno. Sadly, Jean passed away on February 22, 2016 in the Napa Valley.
While his parents and siblings were confined to WWII internment camps initially at Jerome AR and later transferred to Gila River AZ, Harry enlisted in the US Army where he served honorably 1944-1946 achieving the rank of Corporal. Harry was assigned to the Military Intelligence Service, 720th Military Police Battalion stationed in Tokyo Japan and performed duties as an interpreter and interrogator. He was aboard the USS Missouri in 1945 at the signing of the occupation of Japan under the command of General Douglas MacArthur. Harry was a lifetime member of the VFW Sierra Nisei Post 8499.
He devoted decades to civic involvement as the Central Unified School District Board of Trustees President, as a Boy Scouts Leader recognized with the Silver Beaver Award, supported the Japanese Congregational Church after the war and later joined the Konko Kyo Faith being elevated to deacon.
Harry enjoyed the warmth of sunshine on his face, walking around the lagoon just outside his front door at the park and looking for koi fish, watching SF Giants baseball, and loved anything chocolate especially ice cream. He will be remembered for his kindness, the twinkle in his eyes, and an always ready smile. Harry was embraced with care and attention from his many new friends in the Vineyard Valley MHP, Napa Valley, and Bay Area. Family was the most important thing to Harry and he always expressed his concern for everyone’s safety and well-being.
Harry was preceded in death by his Wife, Parents, and younger Brother George Nagata. He is survived by Sister Mary Tanaka of Fresno CA; Sister Ruth Kurihara of Orosi CA; Sister Sally Nagata of Fresno CA; Sister Dorothy Kimura of Clovis CA; Brother Ernest Nagata of San Luis Obispo CA; Son Wesley (Annie) Nagata of Fresno CA; Daughter Vivian (Ken) Robison of St. Helena CA; Son Bruce (Sherry) Nagata of Chandler AZ; Granddaughter Amelia Sakiko Robison of San Francisco CA; Step Grandson Joseph Rediger of Gilbert AZ; nieces and nephews; and countless others whose lives he touched.
Visitation will be held at Lisle Funeral Home on Friday, March 22, 2019, 11 am-7 pm. An inter-faith service will be held at Lisle Funeral Home on Saturday March 23, 2019 at 11 am. Interment to follow at Fresno Memorial Gardens at 1 pm.