Esther Ikemoto, 94, or “Popo” as she was lovingly called, cherished all creatures great and small and she wanted for her love of animals to continue for future generations. Her family wanted to fulfill their mother’s wishes so they created a legacy fund called "Popo Esther Love" at Hawaii Fi-Do Service Dogs, which has raised over $7,000.
“This legacy would perpetuate her selfless helping spirit. She loved to help others in little and big ways,” her daughter wrote. “When I saw [Hawaii Fi-Do’s] videos, I knew that my mom would be so happy to know that she was helping others. She would be too humble to think that she was changing lives. She would be content in knowing that she was simply making others happy.”
The Ikemoto family grew up with dogs. They had five rescue dogs: Rin Tin Tin, Trixie, Missy, Tanya, and Alvin. They ranged from mixed breed to poodles. Popo didn’t have dogs during her later years in life but cherished her children’s dogs.
One of the reasons her family chose Hawai’i Fi-Do to create their mother’s legacy fund is the community outreach we do through our READ program. One of Popo’s daughters is a teacher at Waikiki Elementary School and one of Hawaii Fi-Do’s teams was there, having kids read to our dogs. The other reason is that we do outreach to businesses and the public to educate people about legitimate service dogs.
“I believe that at the end of our lives, we all hope that our time on Earth has made the world a better place. My amazing mom made an incredible difference in the lives of everyone she met. She was full of grace, love, kindness, humor, and with just enough 'kolohe' to make every encounter you had with her zestfully memorable,” her daughter wrote. “It gives us great solace that my mom's loving selfless spirit is being perpetuated with "Popo Esther's Love" through your wonderful organization.”
Popo, your memory will always be remembered through every service dog we train and life they touch.
If you’re interested in honoring a family member or friend by creating a legacy fund, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.