Isamu "Sam" Yoshida J.D. ’79 passed away peacefully July 4, 2012 at the Palo Alto Veterans Hospital in California. He was born in Nagoya, Japan, in December 1945 and permanently moved to the U.S. with his mother, stepfather and siblings in 1960. He graduated in 1964 from Rancho High School in Las Vegas, and served in the U.S. Marine Corps from March 1966 to December 1968. Sam was wounded in Vietnam, in the harrowing hill fighting during the first battle of Khe Sanh, in the spring of 1967 by exploding shrapnel which left him with a small blind spot in his right eye.
In 1972, he married Gail Etsuko Hiroshima, a native of San Francisco, in a civil ceremony in Las Vegas. During his 40 years of marriage, he graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1973 with a B.S. Degree from the College of Engineering, received his Professional Engineer’s License Civil in Engineering in 1976, graduated from Santa Clara University School of Law in 1979, and passed the California State BAR Examination in 1979. Besides being a member of the California State BAR, he was also a member of The American Society of Civil Engineers, American Military Engineers Society, Wilderness Unlimited, and had briefly been a participating member of Rotary International.
His career path led him to work at the following institutions and businesses: Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Western Division in San Bruno, Calif.; Officer in Charge of Construction Yokosuka, Japan, as Head of Acquisition; Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southwestern Division San Diego, as Director of Contracts, General Services Administration (GSA), as Director of Contracts; GSA, as Director of Real Estate; Parsons Brinckerhoff San Jose office, as Contracts Manager; Los Angeles Unified School District, as Director of Facilities Contracts; Seville Group, Inc. as Senior VP and General Counsel; and finally back at Parsons Brinckerhoff International Engineering Firm San Francisco as Legal Manager, Western Region.
He was preceded in passing by his mother, Mitsuko Yoshida Lauver; brother, HN James Lauver, USN; and stepfather, TSgt John T. Lauver, USAF. Sam is survived by his devoted and dearly beloved wife, Gail; beloved companion cat, Velvet; and his loving family, sister, Bonnie (Hugh) Murtaugh; niece, Erin; and nephews, Devin and Bryan; brother, Jan (Barbie) Lauver J.D. ’81; and nephews, John-Matthew and James; brother, Dennis (Karen) Lauver; and nieces, Rebecca and Meghan.
One of the last things he told Gail was that he was eternally grateful for his wonderful life and all the many precious and lasting relationships that he had made since his middle school years in Japan.