Reiko Ohama, 79, passed away on February 10, 2023, in Greenfield, IN.
Reiko Ohama was born on January 9, 1944 in the Japanese controlled Marshall Islands (Majuro), to Gunjirou Higa and Tsuru Higa.
Shortly after Reiko's birth Gunjirou, and Tsuru relocated to Okinawa where Reiko grew up on the Island of Tonaki.
At 3 weeks old her family escaped the Marshall Islands as the U.S. began military operations there, Reiko would be taken to Okinawa where she and her family survived the rest of the war and Reiko and her 4 sisters would grow up on the small Island of Tonaki. She grew up farming and involved in the agricultural work on the Island of Tonaki and had many stories of raising pigs and farming vegetables after the war.
Reiko graduated from high school in Okinawa. She did not want to continue in a farming career. So Reiko began working as a secretary and translator at the US military base where she would meet her first husband Willard.
Reiko married Willard P. Deere in 1965 . The couple had 3 children, Maria (Mia) Deere, Willard Deere II (Takehiro Higa), Daniel Deere (Hiroyuki Higa).
Willard died in 1986 and Reiko married Satoru Ohama in 1992.
Reiko and Satoru would eventually move to Columbus Indiana and open a grocery store where Reiko's experience growing vegetables helped her with the sale of produce and groceries.
Reiko was best known for Her Zealous faith and Christian activity. She always had a Bible nearby herself and could be seen reading it at work and at home. She was always willing to share a faithful word. She was well loved for her generous spirit as she gave many gifts and treats to friends who would visit her.
Reiko is survived by Christopher Deere - grandson, Yuka Deere - granddaughter, Masahiro Higa - grandson, Yui Higa - granddaughter, Willard (Billy) Deere II ( Takehiro Higa) - son, Daniel Deere (Hiroyuki Higa) - son, Yoko Deere - daughter-in-law.
Reiko is preceded in death by; Willard P. Deere - husband, Gunjirou Higa - father, Tsuru Higa - mother, Satoru Ohama - 2nd husband, Maria (Mia) Deere - daughter,