June 3, 1927 – June 5, 2021
Shizuko (“Shiz”) Fujioka, 94, went home peacefully to be with her Savior Jesus Christ on June 5, 2021, in Columbus, Ohio.
Shiz was born on June 3, 1927, in Los Angeles. Her father, Takeo Minami, passed away when she was a child and she and her younger sister, Aiko, were raised by their mother and stepfather, Hisako and Ikumori Sakihara. Shiz attended Nora Sterry Elementary School, Emerson Jr. High School, and University High School until she and her family were sent to the Manzanar concentration camp at the start of WWII. She graduated from Manzanar High School and L.A. City College.
A wonderful wife to Babe for over 60 years until his passing in 2013, Shiz was also a loving and devoted mother and grandmother. Her family was her world. Shiz loved to spend time with her children and grandchildren. She and Babe visited them in cities throughout California, Washington, Texas, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Nevada, and Ohio. During their later years, Shiz and Babe lived with daughter, Janice and her family in Texas, and after Babe’s passing, Shiz lived with son Robert, and daughter-in-law, Elizabeth in Pennsylvania and Ohio. She delighted in discovering new restaurants, museums, parks, churches, malls, and historic sights.
She loved traveling with her family, from camping and fishing to cruises in Mexico and the Caribbean to couples travel with Babe to Europe, Asia, South America, and throughout the U.S. She enjoyed hosting many happy holiday and celebratory events with Babe for their large extended family and friends at their homes. She always looked forward to attending her annual Manzanar High School Reunion and Babe’s Heart Mountain High School Reunion.
Shiz was much loved and appreciated. She was a kind, gracious, and caring woman. She nursed Babe back to health after he contracted polio when they were dating and continued to give selflessly to help others after marriage.
She is survived by her sister, Aiko Jonokuchi (husband, James); her children, Robert (wife, Elizabeth), Margaret (husband, Cedric), Janice (husband, John) and Thomas (wife, Kathy); 15 grandchildren; 2 great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces, nephews, grandnieces, and grandnephews.
Due to COVID-19, a private memorial service will be held in September in Los Angeles. In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations be mailed by check written to the Japanese American National Museum, Attn: Development/In Memory of Shizuko Fujioka, 100 N. Central Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012. For donation questions, please call Lillian at JANM Development at (213) 830-5641.