April 5, 1926 — October 24, 2020
Harold Takashi Kobata was born on April 5, 1926 to Giichiro and Umeno Kobata in Gardena, Calif. He died peacefully in his sleep on Oct. 24, 2020, at age 94.
Harold attended Amestoy Elementary School and Gardena Jr. High School before relocating to Salt Lake City, Utah, at the outbreak of WWII. He attended Bryant Jr. High School, and then graduated East High School in Salt Lake City in 1945 before returning to Gardena with his family.
Harold attended Compton Jr. College from 1945 to 1947. In 1950 he graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering. He then earned a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering at USC, and an MBA at Pepperdine University in 1986.
He was employed for ten years by Great Lakes Carbon Corp. of Walteria, Calif., as a research chemical engineer. Together with two co-workers, Harold established Metro Minerals Inc., and was self-employed until he was hired in 1965 by Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, where he spent the next 30 years as a mechanical engineer and supervisor, retiring in 1995.
Harold was an active member of Gardena Valley Baptist Church for over 80 years; his mother had been a founding member. He served as church moderator, as a member of the Board of Trustees and a member of the Church Building Committee.
His hobby was photography since his teenage years. He has recorded, on film and digitally, countless events in the lives of his family, friends and the community. His favorite pastimes included watching USC football games, attending classical music concerts, woodworking in his garage workshop, and solving the mysteries of the computer.
He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Reiko (Hagio) and his children, son Stuart Kobata, daughter Marian Sunabe (Jack), and his grandchildren, Kaitlyn, Joel, and Halle Sunabe.
A private graveside service was held.