May (Kurose) Joichi

Deceased: February 3, 2013

Service Information:

Celebration of life: Saturday, June 15, 2013 at 10am
Interment: Private burial will follow


May (Kurose) Joichi, 91, of Chicago, Illinois, died peacefully after a brief illness on February 3, 2013. Born in Seattle, WA., the daughter of Tetsuo and Shige Kurose, she attended Garfield High School, where she was on the varsity basketball and softball teams. She was studying pre-medicine at the University of Washington when WWII broke out. Before curfew in Seattle took effect, Mrs. Joichi received her leave permit and a sponsorship from the Baptist Missionary School in Chicago. She was accepted at Mercy Hospital in Chicago for nurseís training in 1942 and after completing her training at Mercy Hospital and advanced training at St. Xavier College, she was licensed as an RN in 1946, specializing in the operating room, to practice in Illinois. During this time, she also became a member of the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps. Continuing her education, Mrs. Joichi attended Yale University School of Nursing and received her masterís degree in Operating Room Technique and Supervision. She was employed at St. Francis Hospital in Evanston, Illinois, and thought of her nursing crew as family, helping several of them complete their education. She had a passion for helping others and would stay at the hospital late at night to ensure her friends and family were being taken care of. After 35 years of being a surgical nurse, teaching students operating room technique and supervising departments of surgery, she retired in June 1985.

She met her husband, Rowland Joichi, in Chicago and they married on November 13, 1955. Mrs. Joichi enjoyed traveling, spending time at the family cottage in Northern Wisconsin and playing golf, which she excelled at. Her greatest joy was spending time with her nieces and nephews and their families.

Mrs. Joichi is survived by two brothers in law, Wayne Stephenson (Kayko) of Clayton, Calif. and William Kagami (Chiye) of Barrington, Ill., nephews Dick Stephenson (Stephanie) of Marietta, GA and Paul Stephenson (Beth) of Acworth, GA, niece Cathy Cummings (Jay) of Oshkosh, WI, nieces Ruthann Rothman (Nathan) of Mercer Island, WA, Marie Woo (Michael), nephews Hugo Kurose (Meredith) and Paul Kurose (Kathleen) all of Seattle, WA., and many grandnieces and grandnephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, three brothers, Junelow, Hugo and Seiji and two sisters, Kayko Stephenson and Chiye Kagami.

A celebration of Mrs. Joichiís recent baptism and adventurous life will be held at 10:00 a.m. on June 15 at Lakeview Funeral Home, 1458 W. Belmont Ave, Chicago, IL. A private burial will follow. In lieu of flowers, the family would like donations to be made to the May Kurose Joichi Memorial Scholarship: c/o Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) 5415 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL. 60640.