Itsue A. Marion Profile Photo

Itsue A. Marion

September 1, 1931 — April 1, 2023

Cedar Hill, MO

Itsue A. Marion

Itsue Asakawa was born on September 1st, 1931, in Nara Japan. She was born the fifth of 8 children to Katogero and Chioyo Asakawa. During her earliest childhood years, her family lived in a comfortable position within the community, her father serving as carpenter for the Buddhist Temple and her mother being the local community designer and seamstress of custom kimonos for other women of the surrounding area.

 At the start of WW II her life, as with all families in Japan, took a most drastic turn. At the end of the war she returned to finish her education and was the first Japanese nurse to serve and care for American military personnel at Tachikawa Airbase in Tokyo Japan. During the course of her time there she met and later married an American airman, Franklin Marion. At the end of her husbands’ duty, he returned to the United States with his wife and settled in eastern Kentucky. It was at this time when she adopted her American name “Sue” which later changed to “momma Sue” and finally to “Gramma Sue.” They later relocated to California, making their home in the San Jose area. Four children were born of the marriage. David Allen residing in Central Point Oregon, Anna Chioyo (Goyea) of Cedar Hill Missouri, Charles Franklin of Chowchilla California, and Frances Faye (Harder) of LaPine Oregon.

Her two greatest accomplishments of life were the education of her children and becoming an American citizen in the 1960’s. She would often say how glad she was to live in America and of the many opportunities not only for her children, but for all people. Of these she was most proud. She continued her work in nursing and private home care, retiring in 2009 at the age of 77. She then moved to Missouri to live with her daughter Anna on the family farm. She continued to stay active working in her gardens and with her farm animals. She was especially fond of her ducks and chickens. It was not unusual to find a gift of a dozen eggs in your car after leaving from a visit to the farm.

She took great joy in seeing the successes of young people and especially young women, herself being a champion of equal rights for all. A lover of people and especially children, she always had a treat in her pocket or apron as a way of telling you how special you were to her. As she aged, she continued to grow as a kinder soul, lover of the land and all that lived upon it and all it produced. Her bedroom faced the lower pasture where she enjoyed watching the horses graze, and the deer come out in the evening. In her last year’s her activity slowed but she never stopped wanting to try.

She was a friend to all, a kind spirit, and a woman with a deep conviction of faith. We will miss her presence, but we know that she is now reaping the benefits she acquired during the time of her life while among us.

She is survived by her children, 10 grandchildren, and 9 great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by 4 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild.

To say goodbye we offer the verse from Isaiah 40:31 “ but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength they shall mount up with wings like Eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”

Fly high gramma Sue. You will always be remembered.

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