August 1, 1926 to June 9, 2021
Mary Fujioka, age 94, passed away June 9 on Bainbridge Island, WA, of natural causes. Mary was born and raised on Vashon Island, WA. She was the second eldest daughter (seventh child) of Sadaji Fujioka (emigrated in 1900 from Kumamoto, Japan) and Tsune Yoshida (emigrated in 1910 from Kumamoto, Japan).
When WWII broke out, the Japanese, whether citizens or not, were uprooted and sent to WRA camps. The Fujioka family was among the 120 Island Japanese who were sent to the Pinedale Assembly Center in Fresno, CA; Tule Lake relocation center, Merced, CA; and Heart Mountain, WY. When Tule Lake became the segregation center, the loyal evacuees were removed to another camp of their choice. The Fujioka family picked Heart Mountain.
Mary graduated from Heart Mountain High School in 1944. She departed the Heart Mountain WRA camp later that same year, relocating to Minneapolis, MN, where she attended Minneapolis Business College. Mary lived for a short time in Cleveland, OH, before returning to the Seattle area where she attended YMCA Technical School.
Mary and her sister, Susie, moved to their newly built home on the south end of Bainbridge Island in 1974 where they raised many dogs, referred to as “the kids.” Mary, Susie, and their dog, Zachary, moved to Madrona House in 2016.
Mary worked as a medical secretary for the VA Hospital until August 1955, when she launched her long and eventful career at The Polyclinic. At various times she handled many aspects of the office including fill-in switchboard operator, medical transcription clerk, central supply coordinator, office manager, and bookkeeper. In 1991, Mary retired after 36 years with The Polyclinic, having taken only about 10 sick days. Mary and her two sisters, Susie and Martha, traveled to Japan in 1992, a retirement gift from The Polyclinic.
Mary was an excellent seamstress and had many hobbies including knitting, bunka, silk flower making, candle making, and quilting.
Mary was predeceased by her parents, Sadaji and Tsune; brothers: Tashio, Utsurugi, Yukio, Tsugio and George; sisters Susie and Martha; and nephew Dennis. She is survived by several nieces, nephews, and extended family.
Thanks to the staff of Madrona House and Multicare Hospice for the compassion and caring for Mary.
A private gathering will be held at a later date.
In honor of Mary’s memory, donations may be made to PAWS of Bainbridge Island.
Arrangements are entrusted to the Cook Family Funeral Home of Bainbridge Island, WA