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Wednesday, January 31, 2001

Kauai’s Yoshichi
Yoshida, legislator,
volunteer, dies

More obituaries

By Harold Morse

Yoshichi Yoshida, 96, of Kapaa, Kauai, former legislator and father of University of Hawaii Athletic Director Hugh Yoshida, died last Wednesday in St. Francis Medical Center.

"He lived a good life and, you know, he enjoyed every minute of it," said son Hugh. "He was one of those kind of guys, an individual who was very much involved in the community and so forth with the Lions Club and the church."

He always helped people but never talked about it, Hugh Yoshida said. "He just did it." Good-natured, he would always laugh about such things as miscommunications, his son said. In his later years, he was hard of hearing and might misunderstand where to meet someone at an airport, for example.

"He would just laugh about it," once contact was made, Hugh Yoshida said. "He had a tendency to just brush it aside."

Born in Kealia, Kauai, the elder Yoshida attended Kauai High School and was the retired owner of Y. Yoshida Service Station and Bus Co. in Kapaa.

He was first elected to the territorial House of Representatives in 1956. A Republican, he won re-election in 1958 but lost in the first state general election in 1959.

He gained the ire of fellow Republicans in 1957 when he voted with two other GOP representatives to override Gov. Samuel King's veto of the Democrats' tax bill. He said he voted as a representative of the people and not as a Republican Party member.

"I felt that if we didn't override the governor's veto, we might get a worse tax bill," he said at the time. "We might be here another 60 days."

In addition to the Lions Club, his civic activity included the Parent-Teacher Association, Kauai Chamber of Commerce and Kapaa Businessmen's Association.

He also is survived by son Reuben; sisters Muriel Ahuna and Koume Sagawa; niece Beatrice Nose; six grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Services will be at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Kapaa Hongwanji Mission. Call after 2 p.m. The family requests casual attire and that flowers be omitted.

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