Evelyn Naoye Kamasaki, 96

Evelyn Naoye Kamasaki, 96, of Waikapu, Maui, passed away peacefully in her sleep, on March 30, 2020.

Evelyn was born in Waikiki, Hawaii, on November 03, 1923, the sixth of seven children born to the late Shotaro and Misawo Hirata.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Teruo Kamasaki of Waikapu; siblings Shizue Hirata, James (Hisako) Hirata, Tadao (Masako) Hirata, Jerome Hirata, Shigeto Hirata, and Toshio Hirata; and son-in-law Robert McCarthy.  She is survived by her two daughters, Cynthia (Robert) McCarthy and Claire (Life Partner Bob Ellis) Kamasaki, and her two grandchildren Robyn (Brian) Garner and Andrew McCarthy. 

 Evelyn led a remarkable life! She graduated from Honpa Hongwanji Japanese school and McKinley Highschool in 1941 just before returning to Japan with her parents in late 1941, before the bombing of Pearl Harbor in December 1941. During World War II, she attended finishing school where she learned how to sew kimono and “got fat eating mochi”. After the War ended, she was employed by the American Occupation Forces in Japan where she was offered the opportunity to return home to Hawaii, since she was an American Citizen. Upon her return to Hawaii, she worked for the telephone company in Honolulu and met Teruo in Foster Botanical Gardens; they would be married in 1951 for nearly 60 years.

After marrying Teruo, Evelyn moved to Maui to start and raise her family. Then in the early 1960’s Teruo was offered an amazing opportunity to move the family to the deserts of Iran to teach a new sugar company about irrigation. After their tour in Iran, the family traveled through Europe on their journey back to Maui. Evelyn loved to travel; so even during retirement they traveled throughout the United States, visiting extended family and exploring the National Parks. She even had the opportunity to visit Russia and China. Evelyn loved her home on Maui and while here, would go to the beach to sit, listen, and relax, or go holo-holo with the family. She often said “you can be a tourist on your island” as she enjoyed the many wonders of Maui.

 A private service was held on April 25, 2020.  A public memorial service will be held at a later time when it is safe to travel and when the family members can attend the internment of Evelyn and Teruo at the Maui Veteran’s Cemetery in Makawao. An announcement will be forthcoming.

 In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Wailuku Hongwanji Mission in memory of Evelyn N. Kamasaki at 1828 E. Vineyard St. | Wailuku, HI  96793.

Online condolences: www.nakamuramortuary.com