Jack Tanaka’s wife, Wanda, helped unveil the highway sign honoring her husband at Diamond Canyon Christian Church.
DIAMOND BAR — State Sen. Ling Ling Chang (R-Diamond Bar) gathered on Oct. 18 at Diamond Canyon Christian Church with community leaders and the family of the late mayor of Diamond Bar, Jack Fumio Tanaka (1947-2017), to honor his legacy.
Senate Concurrent Resolution 11, introduced by Chang in January, will rename a portion of State Route 60 from Lemon Avenue on the west to Golden Springs Drive on the east as Jack Tanaka Memorial Highway.
A well-respected and caring public servant, Tanaka served on the Diamond Bar City Council for 10 years from 2005-2015 and twice as the city’s mayor.
Among those attending the unveiling of the highway sign were elected officials from the Diamond Bar City Council, Walnut Valley Unified School District, and Walnut Valley Water Board.
“I had the great pleasure of serving on the Diamond Bar City Council with Jack Tanaka, and am proud to have worked with our community to rename a portion of SR 60 that runs through Diamond Bar as the Jack Tanaka Memorial Highway,” said Chang.
“Through our time serving, I saw his leadership in action and I understand why he is well-respected even to this day. I am honored to recognize his legacy, and am immensely grateful to our community for coming together to make this possible.
“A special thank you to the Tanaka family, Greg Busch, Diamond Canyon Christian Church, and my fellow Diamond Bar residents. This would not have been possible without your support and leadership.”
SCR 11 reads, in part: “Former Diamond Bar Mayor Jack Tanaka was a man of many accomplishments, receiving a number of international awards and inspiring students through his involvement at Diamond Bar High School …
“Jack Tanaka died on Aug. 3, 2017, after a long battle against lung cancer … Jack Tanaka was a retired United States Army sergeant, worked as a former peace officer with the California Youth Authority in the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, was elected to the City of Diamond Bar City Council, and later served as mayor of Diamond Bar …
“Jack Tanaka and his wife, Wanda, were well known on the Diamond Bar High School campus for their work as dedicated Leo Club advisers, and the couple received the Lions Clubs International’s Lion of the Year Award in 2012, a prestigious prize given annually to individuals who provide long-term service to the community …
“Jack Tanaka was a ready volunteer with the Lions Club, and a great role model for students, faculty, and families … Jack Tanaka was known for helping others and being engaged in many community activities …
“Jack Tanaka was well known by many Diamond Bar residents for being an active member of city government, serving two terms as mayor after he was first elected as mayor in 2005, and continuing on to serve on the City of Diamond Bar Planning Commission as vice chairman for over three years …
“In November 2016, when Jack Tanaka announced his retirement after 10 years of community service to the city, he was praised by the Diamond Bar City Council with a standing ovation, and served his last day in office on Dec. 1, 2016 …
“Jack Tanaka was a great asset to the Diamond Bar community, and embodied the spirit of volunteerism, service, dedication, and kindness to others.”
State Sen. Ling Ling Chang introduced the resolution establishing Mayor Jack Tanaka Memorial Highway.
In addition to Diamond Christian Canyon Church, supporters of the legislation included Chaparral Middle School; Dick Keck, regional commissioner, Diamond Bar American Youth Soccer Organization, Region 31; California Asian Pacific Chamber of Commerce; Diamond Bar Community Foundation; Walnut/Diamond Bar Sheriff’s Booster Club; and Boy Scouts of America, Troop 730, Diamond Bar.
In addition to his wife, Tanaka was survived by his mother, a brother, three sisters, and nieces and nephews.
Chang represents the 29th Senate District, which encompasses portions of Los Angeles, Orange and San Bernardino counties, including the communities of Brea, Chino Hills, Cypress, Diamond Bar, Fullerton, La Habra, La Palma, Placentia, Rowland Heights, Stanton, Walnut and Yorba Linda and portions of Anaheim, Buena Park, City of Industry and West Covina.