Kathie was born in Oakland, California, and graduated from Pleasant Hill High School after spending her junior year as an exchange student in Concepcion, Chile. She attended UC Santa Cruz, studied in Madrid, Spain, and graduated with a degree in Spanish Literature. She and her husband Nao moved to Sebastopol in 1977, where they raised their five children. She taught first and second grade at Hillcrest Elementary in Sebastopol then at Lincoln Elementary in Santa Rosa, where she helped organize an annual bird festival, even after retiring from teaching several years ago.
Kathie was a longtime drummer and board member with Sonoma County Taiko. She loved quilting, gardening, bird watching, hiking & camping, and reading books with her book club. Her greatest joy was her six grandchildren who loved to play, read, and cuddle with "Obaachaan."
Kathie first came to Wischemann Hall with her sister Patty in 2015. From her first step onto the dance floor she was hooked. She always enjoyed the dancing and the incredible camaraderie and support of her fellow Redwood Rainbows.
Unique Square Dance Chronology of Kathie Noguchi
A Remembrance by Lucy Whitworth
Kathie began square dancing with Redwood Rainbows one year after her sister Patty had gotten the square dance ‘bug’! Patty had begun on Monday, October 7, 2013.
On September 16, 2014 Kathie joined a class of three students, which included Marcy Baskin and one of our current Monday new dancers, Michele Bishop. After one week, Marcy and Michelle dropped out, leaving Kathie as the sole member of the class. She was joined each week by a dedicated group of seven Angels.
This unusual configuration continued through January, 2015. On Monday, February 9, 2015, Kathie joined the new Monday class which included some of our current members: Marcy, Janet, Bev, Debbie, Edie, Paula. and Rachel. It was at this point that Kathie realized that her comprehension
of square dancing was directly related to the good intentions of her 7 Angels who had made sure that she was always in the correct position. Being part of a larger class, put more responsibility on her for truly learning the calls! By October, 2015, Kathie was dancing twice a week with her own class and as a helper with the new Thursday night class.
Kathie graduated from Plus on February 15, 2016. She danced several times a week learning to dance all position throughout the following year. She also had a great time attending the Stumptown weekend in May, 2016. In September, 2017, Kathie began learning the Advanced Program of square dancing. She attended class every Thursday even thought she had to leave 30 minutes early to attend her Japanese class at the J.C.
The joy that Kathie always brought to square dancing will live in our hearts forever. We miss you, sweet friend!