Margaret Akiko Tanaka

Margaret Akiko Tanaka passed peacefully at the age of 84 at her home, surrounded by her loving family and blooming flowers.

She loved collecting cookbooks, though she never cooked, feeding stray cats, Broadway musicals and cashing in on casino slots, quoting only her wins and forgetting her losses. She irritatingly loved talking to strangers until they were strangers no more, and woe to you if you woke her too early, unless it was to fish or gamble.

She loved the Tanaka family in SoCal and her own family spread out among her seven sisters and two brothers in the Bay Area and Gilroy. She cherished her friends from Gilroy High, the VFW, various Scout groups and her colleagues in the LAUSD schools where she served as office manager.

She could talk food, reciting every memorable meal, restaurant, bakery, food truck or hot dog hut. Despite eating like a bird, she loved all-you-can-eat buffets, never getting her money’s worth.

She could form families wherever she went, on her many travels to faraway countries or with her community at the lake in Bridgeport, Calif., where she consistently outfished her husband.

But most of all, she loved her family. Her husband, Frank Tanaka, her kids (yes, Rory and MJ included), and her grandkids.

The family has decided not to have a memorial service in this time of COVID. In lieu of flowers or koden, the family requests donations to the Bridgeport Fish Enhancement Foundation,, San Fernando Valley Japanese Community Center, or your favorite local restaurant or casino.

She loved the world and the world loved her back.