Toyoko Shimizu Obituary (1926 – 2021) – Salt Lake City, UT

Toyoko “toy” Murayama Shimizu


Our beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother Toyoko “Toy” Murayama Shimizu passed away on Wednesday, July 28th, 2021 in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her children by her side.

Toy was born on January 20, 1926 in Montebello, California, to Tsuneo Murayama and Kikuno Honda Murayama. Toys parents immigrated from Kumamoto Prefecture on the southern island of Kyushu, Japan, and worked hard to support their family. Toy was the second oldest of four children and when Toy was only seven years old, her mother died for life. As a result of the start of World War II, Toy and her family were sent to the Gila River War Relocation Center in Gila River, Arizona for approximately 3 years. Toy graduated from Canal High School in 1944. Toy loved all sports and played tennis and was also a very good softball player. Toy later attended the University of Utah for about two and a half years. Toy also completed a course in cosmetics and after graduating from beauty school, she met many interesting famous people while employed at the Stylart Beauty Shop at Hotel Utah. She later ran a beauty salon in Wyoming.

After the war, Ted met Toy and they were married on September 17, 1947 in Salt Lake City, Utah. One of the things they enjoyed most in life was traveling together around the United States, Canada, and Europe. Ted’s military service led to many posts in the US and overseas, where Ted and Toy made lifelong friends. While stationed in Vancouver, Washington Ted and Toy adopted their son Ned as a toddler. Ted and Toy then went to Spokane for 2 years when their daughter Treva was adopted as a toddler. Ted and Toy said they realized their deepest desire and joy when they became parents. Ted and Toy said nothing in their lives was more fulfilling or rewarding than raising their son and daughter.

In 1964 Ted was transferred to Kolding, Denmark, for two years. Before leaving the army, Ted, Toy and their children went to France for 1 year. Ted and Toy returned to the United States after retiring from service. Upon her return to the United States, Toy worked for the FAA and later for the Utah Air National Guard as the commandant’s secretary until she retired in January 1995 with 28 years of service. Ted and Toy spent their retirement years tending their large vegetable garden, which they enjoyed tending, and they made a lot of the produce canned and always gave away the fresh vegetables and fruits to family and friends. Toy was a self-taught painter and loved painting in her later years. Toy also enjoyed sewing, tattooing, and knitting, and she was a great cook. Toy loved bowling and did so until she was nearly 90 years old. Toy loved attending the University of Utah gymnastics meetings with Treva and Donovan. Toy enjoyed road trips with her family, especially to California to visit relatives and good friends. While Toy’s declining health made traveling difficult in recent years, Toy was able to enjoy one final road trip to California to visit loved ones in her early 90s.

Toy is survived by her son Ned (Janet) Shimizu; Daughter Treva (Donovan) Bergstrom; Granddaughters Whitney (Tyler) Klotz and Haley Shimizu; Great-grandchildren Jamie and Jesse Klotz; and sisters-in-law Hana Kubo and Mai Shimizu of California; and many nieces and nephews. Toy was preceded in death by her husband, parents, brothers Sam and Ben, and sister Eiko.

Toy and her family would like to express our deepest gratitude to the exceptional doctors and medical staff at the University of Utah who have had them over the years. We would also like to thank The Sheridan at the South Jordan Assisted Living Community, the University of Utah Outpatient Wound Care Clinic, Taylorsville Legacy Village Rehabilitation, Murray Intermountain Medical Center, and the staff at Summit Hospice for the caring and compassionate service you have provided to make our mother more comfortable for the last years and days. Special thanks go to Dr. Nathan Ragle, who for many years looked after our dearly beloved mother in the most extraordinary way with kindness and compassion. Our heartfelt thanks go to all of you and many more than we can mention.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Salt Lake City Cemetery is hosting a private memorial service and internment for families only.

Published by Deseret News August 3-5, 2021.

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