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Matsuju "Eddie" Kaneko Thompson

February 1st, 1926 - July 4th, 2020

Matsuju Kaneko Thompson was born in Saitama-ken, Japan on February 1, 1926. She was the oldest of seven sisters, born to Shun and Nao Kaneko. She is survived by her sisters Fukuko, Wakiko, Wazuko and Setsuko. She spent her youth in Tokyo, Japan, in school she excelled in mathematics. After high school, she became a seamstress. Matsuju was very industrious, with her sisters; she was able to open a successful shop, sewing beautiful clothes for her family and others. After moving to the US, she was in great demand as a seamstress and tailor for several prestigious clothing stores in the Yakima Valley. She met Joseph Thompson, who was in the Army and stationed in Japan after World War II. They married in 1951, moving to the United States. They remained in the military for 20 years, being stationed in France, then back to the States again. Over time, they had six children, and settled in Yakima, Washington to raise them. She is preceded in death by her husband, Joseph. In addition to her sisters, she is survived by her children, Betty Cabaniss, Butch Thompson, Treasea Pecchenino, Paddie Thompson, Dennis Thompson, and Mary Walker. She was grandmother to 19 grandchildren, 23 great grandchildren and one great great grandchild. Matsuju, who chose the nickname Eddie, became a US citizen in 1960. She was proud of both her Japanese heritage and her American citizenship. She was a creative, adventurous woman who loved meeting new people. She faced many challenges throughout her life with strength and resilience. She would say, “If you cannot go over the mountain, find a way to go around it!” She was small in stature but large in character. She will be greatly missed by those who have known her. “Don’t be depressed, keep your chin up and look to the sky.” Shinso Ito

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