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Keiko Takenaka King

February 23, 1935 ~ May 10, 2021 (age 86)

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Keiko Takenaka King, 86, of Havelock, passed peacefully at home surrounded by family who loved and cherished her greatly in the early hours of Monday, May 10, 2021.

A gathering of family and friends will take place from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m., Sunday, May 16, 2021, at Munden Funeral Home in Havelock. In keeping with the CDC guidelines pertaining to the Coronavirus, those who are ill or at-risk (elderly, immune-compromised) are encouraged to stay home. Additionally, there will be a limit to the number of people in the building at one time, as well, those who attend will be asked to bring and wear a protective mask. Upon entering, guests will be asked health questions and their temperatures will be taken. Help us honor the King family while practicing safe measures.

She was a special person who enjoyed her life.  She often recounted stories of the times she spent growing up in Japan.  Stories were of her life experiences during war time, adventures as a teenager with friends and cousins, courtships, the history and culture of her homeland, our shared heritage, good times with family and friends and having a beer sometimes with her father after turning 16.

She was born on February 23rd, 1935 to Taizo and Fumie Tawara Takenaka in Fukuoka, Japan. In Japan, she met and married US Marine Charles R. King in 1959.  She became a mother that year of what would become a large family of which she knitted its close ties.

Keiko was a mix of the old school Japanese culture and current times.  Things that meant the most to her, she strove to instill in her children:  the importance and love of family, honor, integrity and respect for self and others.  She valued education and encouraged all to be the best they could be.

She was hard working, disciplined and had a strong work ethic. She worked many types of jobs, sometimes multiple jobs to provide for and support her family.  She loved to cook and took a position at the local Pizza Hut in 1978.  In 2018, she was given special recognition for 40 years of service to the company.  She continued working at Pizza Hut in Havelock, alongside crew members she loved until April of this year.

She loved nature, outdoor activities in coastal Carolina, history, music - especially old Japanese country style and Koto music, watching tv - NHK, The Food Network, cable programs and movies, reading, shopping, cooking, gardening, and time spent visiting with family and friends.

She was kind, tempered, caring and generous to others.  At several times in her life, she often took in friends of her daughter Sandra, who were experiencing hardship and upheavals in their lives.  She may not have had a lot, but shared what resources she had.  She provided them with food and shelter.  Others would come to call her 'mom,' not just her natural born children.  She cared and loved for others so much, treating them as her own children, it was not unusual to hear them call her 'mom.'

She leaves behind her sister, Hiroko Yoshino of Fukuoka, Japan; children, David King and Kathie King Fuller, both of Havelock, Christine King and Lisa King of Cary, Mai Ozbirn and husband Lee of Las Vegas, NV; sons-in-law, Mike Eskew of Mebane and Robert Eskew of Havelock; grandchildren, Joshua Fuller and Austin Eskew, both of Havelock, Christopher Eskew and wife Kortni of Newport News, Va., Tram, Lina and Jackson Truong, all of California;  great grandchildren, Raylan and Madeline Eskew of Newport News, Va.; and many other friends, loved ones and extended family.

We love her and truly miss her presence.  We know there will never be another like her in our lives again...She is a role model to follow.  Until we meet again, you will not be forgotten momma and our love for you will remain...always.

Many thanks to the Crystal Coast and 3H Hospice and staffs who assisted our mother and family which enabled us to care for her at home.

A special thanks to Trish Maghee, one of her other daughters, for her care, assistance, and guidance through the hospice experience to help family provide the best personal care possible for our mother.  We love you more than you know.

Family and friends are welcome to submit online condolences at

Arrangements by Munden Funeral Home & Crematory in Morehead City, NC. 

To send flowers to Keiko's family, please visit our floral store.


Gathering of Family and Friends
May 16, 2021

1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Munden Funeral Home & Cremations
908 Lake Road
Havelock, NC 28532

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