Janet Aiko Sekiguchi Foundation

Carrying on Janet's legacy of social justice through urban education and ministry.

Janet Sekiguchi Biography

Janet Aiko Sekiguchi was born in Seoul, Korea on Sept. 13, 1976. She was originally named Soon Wu Kim by her birth mother, a name which means Precious Jade in Korean. She may have been given that name with the hope that she would live a prosperous life. When we adopted her at the age of 7 1/2 months, we renamed her Janet Aiko, which means Child of Love, Consecrated to God.

Janet spent her formative years in Pearl City, Hawaii. She was an energetic child who loved to read, swim, and draw. When she was 8 years old, we moved to San Diego and she participated in the district's accelerated program. She graduated from Gompers High School with honors. During her teen years she was active in her church's youth group, went on short term mission projects to Mexico, and volunteered in community activities.

She majored in Linguistics at Stanford University. Janet was an active member of the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, participated in summer mission projects in Los Angeles and Oakland, and taught Sunday School at her church. She also went to China on a mission trip. After graduation, Janet continued her education at Stanford and received her Masters Degree in Education and her secondary teaching credential.

Janet taught various math courses to junior highers in Milpitas, and at the King's Academy in Sunnyvale. She also taught English as a Second Language to adults and tutored students. She continued to teach in Sunday School and led Worship for her church's young adult group.

Throughout her life, Janet reached out to the wider community by sharing her love for God through her talents and skills. She played the guitar and sang, she was an avid crafter, and she related well to children and teens.

When she was a senior in high school she began to show signs of bipolar distress. Her periods of depression deepened and began to occur more frequently after college. This disorder took a toll on her energy, her career, and desire to serve her Lord. She tried to accomplish as much as she could during the healthier intervals of her life. During her last period of depression, she took a heavy dosage of her medication that ended her life. She died on April 11, 2002 at the age of 25.

As her mother, I praise God for her life. Janet was a unique individual who touched our lives in tangible ways: she loved people, not for what they could do for her, but for being themselves alone; she shared the fruits of the Spirit in creative ways, compassionately, one on one; she lived for the present, forgetting the past and leaving tomorrow up to God.

- Janet's Mother