Raymond Takao Matsunaga of Berkeley passed away peacefully on July 3, 2016 surrounded by family.
Ray was born in Hilo, Hawaii. He took a one-way ticket to the mainland to attend Grinnell College where the frigid winters in Iowa left him wistful for Hawaii’s gentle breezes. Between studies he served in the Army in Colorado. He was president of his dental school class at Temple University where he graduated first in clinical grade and was elected into the National Dental Honor Society. A year of rotating dental internship at the VA Hospital in Long Beach followed. He met Amy Matsuoka at a party in Boston for overseas Hawaiians. They were married in 1959 and raised two devoted children, Alison and Chris.
After earning his degree in orthodontics at Tuffs University, Ray practiced in Berkeley and El Cerrito from 1962 to 2003. He truly loved being an orthodontist, taking pride in the beautiful smiles of his many patients.
His other passions were fly fishing and cooking. Those of us who were lucky enough to partake in his meals knew we were in for a real feast. And even after a day of fishing on the stream Ray was known to cook for his fishing buddies. After losing Amy to cancer in 1981, he helped form the Grizzly Peak Fly Fishing club.
He is predeceased by his brothers Ichiro, Richard and Herbert and is survived by his sister Irene Oyama.
He found love again and married Annette Rodau in 1991. Annette, children Alison (Rob) and Chris (Karen) and grandchildren Christina, Kate, Kent, Amy and Maya feel blessed to have been embraced by his love. And his warm heart touched all he encountered.
A celebration of Ray’s life will be held at Sunset View Mortuary, 101 Colusa Avenue, El Cerrito on Sunday, July 31, 2016 at 10:00 AM.