Honorary Degree Recipient Jack Yoshihara Passes Away

May 14th, 2009

About a year ago, former students were brought to campus to take part in commencement to receive their honorary degrees. You may remember previous postings on this in the “At Long Last” series.

Sadly, Jack Yoshihara who attended the ceremony to receive his honorary degree has passed away. On behalf of the the Oregon State University community, I would like to extend our sincere condolences to Jack’s friends and family. He will be greatly missed. Below you see Jack’s obituary from the Oregonian, a photo with former OSU Japanese American Student Association President Kristen Atebara from the Gazette Times, as well as a short video with footage from last year’s honorary degree commencement activities of former ASOSU President talking about Jack and the experience of the executive order internment announcement.

From The Oregonian:

Jack Yoshihara, a longtime Portland resident, passed away on April 20, 2009, in Seattle. He was born in Okayama, Japan on May 1, 1921, and emigrated with his parents from Japan.

A graduate of Benson High School, he attended Utah and Oregon State Universities. Jack received an honorary degree from OSU on June 14, 2008, due to his internment at Minidoka Relocation Center, Idaho, during his college years. He was a member of the 1942 Oregon State Rose Bowl team, but did not play due to wartime travel restrictions. Jack worked in refrigeration, and retired as a member of the Plumbers and Steamfitters Local 235. He was an active participant in judo, kendo, sumo, fishing, mushroom hunting and excelled in football. Working in his garden, grooming his bonsai trees and wood carving also provided enjoyment. He was preceded in death by his wife, Elsie Masuda. Jack recently remarried and moved to Edmonds, Wash., where he is survived by his wife, Mary Arai; her daughter, Stephanie Ulstein of Bellevue, Wash.; sister, Misa Minagi of Portland; son, Jay Yoshihara of Portland; daughter, Lynn Kanaya of Gig Harbor, Wash.; three grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren. There will be no service, as his spirit will be kept alive by many kind thoughts. Remembrances may be sent to the Oregon State Beaver Athletic Student Fund or the Ikoi No Kai Senior Hot Lunch Program in Portland.

[photo from The Gazette Times]

Former ASOSU President talks about Jack and the executive order announcement of the internment.


80 responses to “Honorary Degree Recipient Jack Yoshihara Passes Away”

  1. I’m really sorry to hear about him passing away and I wish his family the best! Also keep up the great work here on your blog, I love the colors & the design. How long did it take you to create this?

  2. very inspiring.. I am so sorry about him but I am proud of his huge accomplishments

  3. jackspin007 says:

    Jack Yoshihara was a great man.I surprised with these 87 years old graduate great post.

  4. What a good guy, thanks for sharing.

  5. Hangi says:

    What an achievement and a great life.

  6. A truly inspiring and touching momento….

  7. wow, im sad to hear the news……

  8. An amazing life of accomplishments, may he R.I.P.

  9. A few men have been great, and it is good to see that he was an old man but still with sence of humor, that mean it doesn`t matter how we look outside the important is wath we have inside, person like that are missed all time, and stay in a good remember.

  10. Gynexin says:

    Looking at this great man, God rest his soul, makes me wonder if perhaps the older generations were made of sterner stuff then we today are. Anyway I’m glad he got his degree, it looks like it meant a lot to him.

  11. May he rest in peace, he done many achievements and a great life.

  12. Dermatin says:

    absolutely awesome , R.I.P.

  13. Motercalo says:

    Jack Yoshihara was a great man!

  14. Hippie Clothing says:

    He’s very kind. RIP. Rest in peace with god. goodbye

  15. Lewis Gall says:

    Very good man. Everybody will miss him.

  16. Bow Arrows says:

    Big loss of the great man

  17. An amazing life of accomplishments, may he R.I.P.

  18. Jack Yoshihara was a great man and will be greatly missed.

  19. Adrianna says:

    Great article. Mr Yoshihara will be missed.

  20. May he rest in peace. He was a good man.

  21. CNM Online says:

    Nice photo of Jack Yoshihara. He is 87 years old graduate. I will never forget your passion and everything you teach to us about life.

  22. It just shows that one is never to old to learn.

  23. Paul says:

    RIP good man, everybody will miss him in France and Europe

  24. Great man! It is cool to read this. I learned something new

  25. nice sharing. RIP Yoshihara

  26. Carla says:

    Condolences to his family

  27. Becky says:

    Looks like he’s had a full and enjoyable life. Condolences to the family and prayers for the departed soul.

  28. Thanks for converse about Jack. I strongly believe him and I benefit from learning about his subject. My condolences to his family and prayer for the departed soul.

  29. Jack Yoshihara.. he good man..

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