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Death in our diocesan family: Momoyo "Momo" Yamada

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Momoyo "Momo" YamadaWith sadness we share the news of the death of Momoyo “Momo” Yamada, 76, on July 15, 2020 in San Diego, after a brief battle with cancer. She was the mother of the Rev. George C. Wong of The Church of the Saviour in Denville.

She was born to Joichi and Tsunako on February 27, 1944 in Manzanar internment camp. At the close of WWII, along with many other Japanese-Americans internees in Manzanar and in similar camps, the family was released, and subsequently resettled in Los Angeles, where she attended Manual Arts High School. While working at TRW, first as a secretary and then later as an accounting clerk, she went on to earn a degree in accounting. In 1990, she assumed a position in San Diego as the Accounting Manager at Nishiba Industries, where, never quite getting the hang of retirement, she served as the company Controller for many years until her death.

She enjoyed the freedom and independence that her hard work afforded, and was widely known to be generous almost to a fault with family, friends and, on occasion, people she just met who were in need. She also relished spending time at a few favorite casinos, which showed their appreciation for her patronage by granting her comp status and rewards, which thrilled her. She was a frequent traveler to places far and wide, often taking family and friends along, and had recently returned from a cruise of Japan in late 2019. Having worked for years in Mexico in her capacity at Nishiba, she developed a deep affinity and love for country and its culture, which influenced her decision to take up residence in Tijuana, Mexico.

For many years, she was an active volunteer at Maria Regina Roman Catholic church in Gardena, CA and was also active as a community organizer and advocate for social justice.

In addition to George, she is survived by her son Michael and daughter-in-law Karen; her grandchildren, Matthew and Karissa; her sister, Sally; her brother, Bruce; as well as a host of treasured, aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews and nieces. She was preceded in death by her father, Joichi, her mother, Tsunako and her brother, Tetsu, “Tets,” a Vietnam veteran.

Condolences may be sent to George at

A Celebration of life service will be broadcast from The Church of the Saviour in Denville at 2 PM on Saturday, August 8, 2020 with the Rev. George Wong officiating. In addition to being broadcast online, the service will also be recorded for later viewing. Additional service link information will be posted on their website.

Lord, for your faithful people life is changed, not ended. When the body of our earthly dwelling lies in death, we gain an everlasting dwelling place in heaven. Lord, grant eternal rest, forever in the radiance of your light. Amen.