Gary Korematsu, 73, passed away on April 24, 2022, suddenly and unexpectedly at his home in Volcano, California. He is survived by his wife of 31 years Rebecca, sons Alan and Quinn Korematsu, and sister Sharon Yee. Being in a rush, Gary was born at 7-1/2 months and weighed 1 pound on September 14, 1948, and miraculously survived to go home with Bette and Harry Korematsu.
Gary lived a life of service, contributing to his beloved Amador County and town of Volcano. Gary grew up in San Mateo and Atherton, but spent the majority of his life upcountry in Amador County. Gary went to the College of San Mateo and Cal Poly, organizing the horticultural Poly Royal celebration as a junior. After his mother’s passing, he joined his father, Harry, and sister Sharon, in the family wholesale floral business, where he pioneered a new treatment for preserving eucalyptus. He then moved up to Amador County in search of a better life due to his good friend, Terry Grillo. He opened Chula’s Cheesecakes in Volcano, providing sweets to local restaurants. He also was a mortgage banker and helped to raise the FHA loan limits in Amador and Calaveras, helping everyone who needed a new home. He also was an eligibility worker for Amador County and compassionately helped people in need. After his retirement from Amador County, he worked at KMART and as a caregiver at Kit Carson and Amador Residential Care. He was a practitioner of Nichiren Buddhism for over 30 years.
Gary demonstrated his love of service in many roles, including being President of the Volcano Community Association; Director of the Volcano Community Services District; President and founder of Amador Community Television, Director of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Amador/Calaveras Counties and fundraiser/organizer of Charity Bowl-a-Thon for Kids’ Sake; Vice President of the Mortgage Lenders Association of Calaveras/Amador; Amador County Election Inspector; Amador Upcountry Rotary Club member for 10+ years; Amador Polar Bears Swim Team stroke and turn judge; Motherlode Youth Soccer League soccer referee and coach; Amador Youth Basketball Coach; and 10 years as the Easter Bunny in Volcano, California.
As a florist, Gary loved flowers at memorials and designed Rebecca’s wedding bouquet. A remembrance of Gary’s life will be held on Saturday, May 21, at 2 pm at the Volcano Armory Hall.
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