James (Jim)  Hada
James (Jim) Hada

June 18, 1924 - March 24, 2016
Born in Ft. Lupton, Colorado
Resided in Denver, CO
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Jim Hada, age 91, passed away peacefully attended by family and friends. Jim was born to Taro and Hama in Ft Lupton. He graduated from Ft Lupton High School and worked on his father's farm until enlisting in the Army. He served in Germany, France and Belgium. He enrolled in Denver University and had the opportunity to study abroad in Mexico City as an exchange student. In 1950, Jim returned to Denver and married Mariko Yoshinaka and together they raised three sons, Calvin, Bob and Wesley. Jim worked for King Soopers for his entire 35-year career, most of which he served as manager.

Jim dedicated much of his adult life to public service in benefit of the Japanese American community through his involvement and leadership in several civic organizations. In 1975, he joined the Japanese American Association of Colorado (JAAC) and remained a member throughout his life, serving as vice-president, two terms as president until retiring from the Board as the first "Director Emeritus".

In 1979, Jim was among a small group of Nisei (2nd generation Japanese-Americans) who founded the Denver Central Optimist Club which later became The Amache Club who began working with the city of Granada to erect a monument to Nisei soldiers who joined the U.S. Army while they and their families were incarcerated at The Granada War Relocation Center, also called Amache, during WWII. These efforts lead to more than two decades of Jim's commitment to recognizing the historical significance of Amache, culminating in the designation as a National Historic Landmark by the National Park Service. He served as president for 12 years. Jim also was involved in the Japanese American Citizen's League (JACL) for many years.

Jim received many awards for his volunteer efforts. He received the Asian American Hero Award in 2009. His highest accolade came in 2014 when he was honored to have the Japan Imperial Decoration: The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays (also called the Kunsho Medal) conferred upon him by the Consulate General of Japan in Denver. This is the highest honor that can be received by a non-Japanese civilian and is bestowed directly from the Emperor of Japan.

Preceding him in death were his parents, Taro and Hama, his three brothers; George, Tom and Ted Hada; his sisters Grace Chernin and Harley Yamashita; and his wife, Mariko (Yoshinaka) Ewing. He is survived by his sons Calvin (Kristi) Hada; Bob (Maureen) Hada; and Wesley Hada; his grandchildren, Rocky, Liz and James; sisters-in-law, Jane Hada and Ruby Hada; nephews Kerry (Linda) Hada and Ken Hada; and nieces Vickie and Jill Hada.

Jim enjoyed gardening, visiting with family and friends, spending time with his grandchildren and watching the Denver Broncos. The family would like to thank the staff at The Oberon for the wonderful care they provided during Jim's final weeks of life.

Memorial donations may be made in James' honor to:

The Amache Club
906 South Palisade Court
Louisville, Colorado 80027

A Memorial Reception will be held on Friday, April 22, 2016 from 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM at Horan & McConaty, 7577 West 80th Avenue, Arvada, Colorado.

A Memorial Service honoring James will be held on Saturday, April 23, 2016 at 11:00 AM at the Denver Buddhist Temple, 1947 Lawrence Street, Denver, Colorado.

Please share your memories of James and condolences with his family by signing the guest book below.




Memorial Reception
Horan & McConaty - Arvada
7577 West 80th Avenue
Arvada, CO US 80003
Friday, April 22, 2016
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Memorial Service
Denver Buddhist Temple
1947 Lawrence Street
Denver, CO
Saturday, April 23, 2016
11:00 AM


The Amache Club
906 South Palisade Court
Louisville, CO 80027