Guadalupe Jiroco “Lupe” Tainaka, 82, longtime Mattawa area resident, passed away on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 at the Bonaventure Assisted Living Community in Richland, Washington. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, December 28 at St. Andrew’s Catholic Church in Ellensburg with a reception and celebration of life to follow. Viewing will be one hour before the service at St. Andrew’s and from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. on Friday, December 27 at Steward & Williams Funeral Home in Ellensburg.
Lupe was born on December 5, 1937 in Matamoros, Coahuila, Mexico to Taichi & Tome (Fujii) Ohtomo. She was raised in Mexico City and attended boarding school when she was a teenager in El Paso, Texas. She had many fond memories of boarding school. It was here that she perfected her English as a third language (in addition to Spanish and Japanese) and also developed a love of opera from a good friend. After graduating, she worked as a secretary for a Japanese company in Mexico.
She married Shigeo “Joe” Tainaka on January 12, 1967 in Mexico City and the couple made their home in the Bruce/Warden area before moving to Mattawa in the early 1970’s. It was in the Mattawa area that Lupe and Joe established their family farm, raising onions, potatoes and corn. Lupe was a homemaker and farmwife, helping to ensure that both the home and farm ran smoothly. She enjoyed shopping, reading, opera and tennis and had a sweet spot for her cats and dogs.
Lupe is survived by her son John Tainaka of Mattawa; daughter Kirsten (Michael) Washer of Centennial, Colorado; grandchildren Aidan and Charlotte; and by her sisters Maria, Misao and Tencha. She was preceded in death by her husband Joe, son Eric and brother Azumi.
Memorial contributions in Lupe’s honor are suggested to any local cause providing support for breast cancer patients and their families. Steward & Williams Funeral Home and Crematory of Ellensburg has been entrusted with caring for Lupe’s family. Online condolences may be left at www.steward-williams.com
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