Class of 1973
GARY Born in Tokyo, Japan on June 2, 1955, to Eugene and June Miyazono. The youngest of their two sons, Gary lived in Japan until he was 18 years old, then moved to San Diego, CA and has resided there until his passing on Saturday, January 17, 2009. Gary enjoyed fishing, golfing and the company of his friends and family. A wonderful husband, father and friend who will be missed by all who knew him. Gary is survived by his wife of 25 years, Amelita, his two daughters, Nicolette and Naomi, June, his mother and his older brother, Ken. Viewings will be held on Thursday, January 22nd, and Friday, January 23rd, from 3 to 8 p.m. at El Camino Mortuary, 5600 Carroll Canyon Rd. A Memorial Service will be at the El Camino Mortuary Chapel (same address) on Saturday, January 24th, at 2:00 p.m.
Name: Wally Maroney
Saturday, January 24th was a day of mixed emotions. On the day of his funeral, it was a time to celebrate the life of Gary Miyazono, “Bippy”, and to mourn his passing. The weather even got in the act. The morning started out overcast and by early afternoon the sun had burst through as if knowing why we had all gathered together.
There was a huge outpouring from the community. We had a nice contingent of Warriors as well. Old friends and new friends together as one. The chapel was standing room only. It was no surprise that Bippy had an impact on all these people’s lives. A few Warriors, unable to attend the funeral, were able to participate in the viewing held the two days prior. I’m sure Bippy’s family was very grateful.
Following the opening by the priest, Bruce Lawrence got up to deliver an eloquent eulogy reminding us of how Bippy would not want us to mourn his passing, rather remember and celebrate the time we had with him. He also quoted from a poem, of which the author’s name escapes me, in both English and Japanese. It was very stirring. John Roussin then followed with a highly edited selection of events in the life of he and Bippy and some of the rest of us beginning from the start of their friendship, mixing in some humorous moments, and concluding with an emotional goodbye. Hardly a dry eye could be seen in the house.
Immediately after the end of the service, there was a final viewing of Bippy. John gave me a cigar, which I placed in Bippy’s jacket pocket. We forgot the Grey Goose Vodka for his final journey. I’m sure the liquor will be flowing freely where he is headed. I just hope he saves some for us when we join him. During the private family viewing John told me that the family took roses from one of the bouquets and laid them in the coffin with Bippy. His wife and daughters demonstrated tremendous strength throughout this ordeal. Bip would have been proud.
Dinner followed, and as fate would have it, at the last restaurant Bippy was able to enjoy. After dinner there were many hugs, a few stories, photos, and more emotions as we all headed home.
A group of us returned to John’s house where we once again tried to come to terms with the swiftness of Bip’s departure. That and the woulda, coulda, shouldas that follow can drive a person crazy. However, when you get a group of Warriors together you can’t escape the inevitable stories that seem to get better with age. Some of us brought old pictures to share and yearbooks to reminisce over. It’s funny how we discover details of these that we didn’t notice before. When you add our attempts to negotiate Nintendo Wii, the gut busting laughter was just what we all needed.
It’s ironic that it took the loss of one of us to get us all together. Some of us hadn’t seen each other on 30+ years. It is my hope that it doesn’t take another loss to get us together again. We all agreed to make every effort to meet again at the next reunion. This time it was more than just words.
I don’t need to remind everyone that our time on this earth is short as evidenced by Bippy’s and other loved ones passing. We just can’t take it for granted that our loved ones and friends will be around. If you can’t visit with one another try to take the time to place a phone call or an email. We never know when it will be our time to leave. With that I look forward to seeing many of you at the next reunion. If you can’t make it send an email or ring someone up but stay in the loop.
|Name: Nancy Houston '71
Visitor Comments: Like many of you, I will sincerely miss Gary's quick wit and company at our reunions. It's hard to believe that he is gone. His brother, Ken, and I are from the same class which is how I got to know Gary during High School. My deepest condolences to his family and closest friends. May the best memories keep him forever alive in our hearts.
If you wish to express your concern with his family, here is the address:
Name: Libby Blackstead
Bippy was one of a kind and I know he will be missed by so many and leave a huge hole in our Warrior family.
We have now lost 3 Warriors in less than 12 months which just drives home the importance of staying connected and renewing friendships through the reunions.
Blessings to all of you!
Name: Donna (Carlini) Martinson
Name: Mike Talmont
Name: Elaine Gamble 1973
Name: wally maroney
GARY HAD BEEN RECENTLY DIAGNOSED WITH A RARE FORM OF CANCER TO THE ESOPHAGUS. HE WAS SCHEDULED TO BEGIN CHEMOTHERAPY TREATMENT EARLIER IN THE WEEK WHEN HE SUFFERED FURTHER COMPLICATIONS FROM A STROKE. THOUGH HE MADE A HEROIC EFFORT AND FOUGHT AS BEST HE COULD, THE COMBINATION OF THE TWO WAS MORE THAN HIS BODY COULD WITHSTAND.
GARY MOVED TO SAN DIEGO AFTER YAMATO IN THE EARLY ‘70’S AND WAS ROOMATES WITH LIFELONG FRIEND JOHN ROUSSIN. THEY REMAINED IN SAN DIEGO AND CONTINUED THEIR SCHOOLING, PARTIED, EACH GOT MARRIED, PARTIED, HAD KIDS, PARTIED AND EVENTUALLY WORKED TOGETHER. DID I MENTION THEY PARTIED? THEY WERE AS CLOSE AS ANY TWO BROTHERS COULD EVER BE. LIKE GARY’S FAMILY, JOHN IS DEVASTATED BY HIS PASSING.
I WILL ALWAYS LOOK BACK WITH MUCH FONDNESS AT THE TIMES SPENT WITH BIPPY, JOHN AND THE OTHER MEMBERS OF OUR GROUP, THE Y.G.H.C., DURING HIGH SCHOOL AND THE TIMES WE HAD BENDING THE LAW AND ATTEMPTS TO SEE HOW FAR WE WOULD GO TO BECOME MENTALLY IRREGULAR ON A REGULAR BASIS AND OTHER HIJINKS THAT ARE BETTER LEFT UNSAID, AT LEAST ON THIS FORUM. I WOULD HAVE LIKED TO HAVE GOTTEN TOGETHER WITH THEM MORE OFTEN IN RECENT YEARS BUT AS IT HAPPENS, LIFE GOT IN THE WAY AND MY TOLERANCE GREW WEAKER. IT’S PROBABLY FOR THE BETTER AS I’M SURE THAT MY MEMORY WOULD BE WORSE STILL. THE REUNIONS PROVIDED US THE TIME TO PICK UP WHERE WE LEFT OFF ALBEIT AT A MUCH TAMER PACE.
THOUGH WE MOURN HIS PASSING, LET US ALSO CELEBRATE HIS LIFE AND THE TIME HE SHARED WITH US.
HE IS SURVIVED BY HIS WIFE, AMY, TWO DAUGHTERS, NICKIE AND NAOMI, OLDER BROTHER KEN, HIS MOTHER, AND DOG EVA.
DETAILS OF HIS VIEWING AND FUNERAL SERVICES WILL BE FORTHCOMING AS THE INFORMATION BECOMES AVAILABLE.