Mary Takeshita

Jul 16, 2011 | Heart and Soul


Mary Takeshita has called Pearl City home for the past 66 years. As our next PC Heart & Soul honoree, Takeshita is well deserving of being recognized for the many years she has served Pearl City as a community volunteer and leader.

Her dedication to the community has been instrumental in providing for the needs of Pearl City residents from Keiki to Kupuna.

In 2011, Takeshita received the Mayor’s Senior Volunteer Recognition Award which recognizes nominees who have devoted their time to enhance and better the lives of residents in the communities they serve.

Takeshita supports the Pearl City Community Association (PCCA), as a volunteer in support of PCCA scholarship fundraising drives and annual community events.

“I help the Pearl City Community Association,” said Takeshita. “We decorate for various dinners and help with huli-huli chicken, community Family Fun Day and Halloween Bash at the Momilani Community Center.”

For the past four years, Takeshita has served her community in a leadership role as the Waiau Seniors Club President and Council Chair.  

“The Waiau Seniors Club makes leis for Memorial Day,” Takeshita said. “Also, as a club, we do things for the hospitals.”

Takeshita is also a certified Master Gardener at the Urban Garden Center (UGC) in Pearl City. UGC Master Gardeners are required to complete a course that is taught at the UGC to become certified. Master Gardeners also conduct gardening classes for both adults and children on the “Second Saturday” of each month.

”It was a three month course and every week you take a test. From plants to bugs and soil and everything,” Takeshita said. “I also belong to the FCE, Family Community & Education. They help with our Second Saturday’s here. They do the class for the children.”

Takeshita explained how she first got started at the Urban Garden Center; “In the beginning, Toshi, he’s an old time gardener here, and he used to bring me lettuce and stuff. So one day, I said hey, I need to help you with the gardens. I need to help you weed. I started to come here and one day, in our newsletter for the FCE they asked for help for the school tours. I volunteered for that and started helping with the school tours. We had to take the kids to the garden and I said that I need to know more about the garden. When the Master Gardener program came out I enrolled.”

Being a volunteer at the UGC keeps Takeshita and the other Master Gardeners and support volunteers pretty busy on the weekends.

“First Saturday we come out and help and clean out this area and get ready for the Second Saturday,” Takeshita said. “On the Second Saturday I’m here and I usually help out at the classroom.”

Now, you would think with the above mentioned weekly volunteer schedule, Takeshita would have no more time available to volunteer elsewhere. Not true, she also teaches kids crafts at Pearl City Elementary School.

“I also help Ms. Merle Morikawa who runs the Kids Care Program at Pearl City Elementary School,” Takeshita said with a smile. “I help her with the crafts. I go there twice a week to teach kids crafts. She runs the After School Care and Summer Sessions.

Mary Takeshita is a difference maker and true living treasure in the Pearl City community and will continue her volunteer mission for many years to come.  She is very dedicated to her church and volunteers for many of the outreach programs in the community.

“Volunteering keeps you young,” Takeshita said as she continued on with her gardening chores at the Urban Garden Center in Pearl City.

                                                       Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Mary Takeshita takes a break from her Urban Garden Center chores for a photo. Thanks Mary!

                                                       Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Mary (third from left) poses with Waiau Seniors Club members who volunteered at the 2011 Waiau Easter Egg Hunt which is sponsored by the City & County of Honolulu and is held annually at Waiau District Park in Pearl City.

                                                       Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Mary pictured helping on the grill at the Momilani Community Center with Pearl City Community Association Board Members, Warren Hiromoto (left) and Calvin Ebesutani (right) at the center's Intersession Dinner for students and their families.


                                                       Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Mary pictured with Waiau Senior Club members stringing leis that will be delivered to the National Cemetery of the Pacific at Punchbowl for Memorial Day. Hawaii Boys and Cub Scout Troops place the leis on the gravsites of our countries fallen heroes the day before Memorial Day.

                                                       Photo by Barry Villamil | [email protected]

Mary pictured with fellow Certified Master Gardener, Rita Inouye outside of a Second Saturday at the Garden classroom session held at the Urban Garden Center in Pearl City.