Obituary of Tamotsu Morikawa
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Rev. Tamotsu “Tom” Morikawa
February 9, 1931 - July 28, 2020
Tamotsu, known as “Tom” or “Uncle Tom” to many, “Dad”, or “Grampie” to a few, passed peacefully in his sleep in the early morning hours of July 28, 2020, at the age of 89, in Scarborough, Ontario, Canada. He is survived by his wife Audrey, his sons Bob and David, daughter-in-law Lisa, and granddaughters Rebecca and her fiance John, and Hannah. Also survived by sister-in-law Lois.
Tom was born in 1931 in Haney, British Columbia, to Mitsuru and Yasutaro Morikawa. Tom was the youngest of seven children, and follows his sisters Mitsuko (deceased, 2015), Etsuko (deceased, 2000), Asano “Essie” (deceased, 1996), Hatsuno (deceased, 1993), and brothers Katsumi (deceased, 1940’s), and Jitsuo (deceased, 1987). Their farm was known as one of the most progressive in the area, and marketed specialty crops to the Japanese-Canadian community in nearby Vancouver. The Morikawa family was evacuated in the 1940s, and were interned at Taylor Lake, B.C. After the war, the entire family relocated to the Toronto area, where Tom attended high school and university, graduating from Victoria College, University of Toronto (BA), and McMaster Divinity College (M.Div). In 1963, Tom married Nancy Mitchell (deceased, 1986). Tom devoted his career as a Pastor with Canadian Baptist Churches of Ontario and Quebec, including serving First Nations communities. He served at St. Mary’s, Oshweken, Kensal Park (London), First Oneida, Wentworth (Hamilton), and Ferndale (Scarborough).
Tom was a gentle, caring person, who saw something positive in everyone and made the best of every situation. His spirit of kindness and mischievous humour was infectious, touching many, from his parishioners to his friends and family, and even the staff in the retirement home where he spent his last days. He will be deeply missed, but those who knew him are blessed to carry a spark of kindness and laughter with his memory.
A service to honour and celebrate his life will be held in the fall.