Dorothy Okamoto Takasugi
May 2, 1933 – April 11, 2018
Dorothy Okamoto Takasugi was born Kinuyo Okamoto in Oakland, CA on May 2, 1933. She was born the youngest of six children to Shinzo Okamoto and Kura Okamoto. Her siblings were Bob, Chizu, Setsu, Tatsuko and Haruko.
Dorothy, known as “Dodo” by her loved ones, had a gentle, even-tempered spirit and a warm, good-natured smile flanked by two memorable dimples. As a child, Dorothy was drawn to the arts, particularly music. She played classical pieces such as Malaguena by Ernesto Lecuona and Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto no.2 op.18. She frequently played them on her dear upright Kirschner piano until she and her family were sent to live in the Heart Mountain internment camp during WWII. A kind neighbor kept her piano for her while she was in internment camp, so it has remained in her possession to this day.
Dorothy met her husband, Robert Mitsuhiro Takasugi at UCLA, where she received her BA in English. Dodo went on to receive her Master’s in Psychology at USC. She and Robert married on March 30, 1957. Dorothy worked as an English and typing teacher at Burbank High School, supporting both of them while Robert attended USC law school in 1959. Years later, the two built their first and only home in Montebello on Peacock Lane, a street known for its wild peacocks which would nest upon their roof. She raised two children, Jon Robert and Lesli Mari as a stay-at-home mom until the two were in middle school. Thereafter, she worked for over 20 years as a school psychologist for the Pasadena Unified School District.
Dorothy was blessed by many wonderful friendships, as well as close relationships with siblings, nieces and nephews. She was a loving mother and wife, as well as a stabilizing influence in the lives of all who knew her. Dorothy is survived by son Jon, daughter Lesli, and three grandchildren Matthew, Kinuyo, and Mukti. She passed away on April 11, 2018 and will be forever cherished and missed. A private service was held on May 2, 2018.