Update: It is being reported by ABC News, that funeral services will be held for Satoru Iwata on Friday July 17, 2015. Iwata-san is survived by his wife, Kayoko. The company declined to disclose further information about his family. Be sure to see the article linked above for further details.
It is with the heaviest of hearts that I write that we have lost a gentleman who truly has impacted the lives of every present-day gamer, whether they know it or not. Nintendo CEO, Mr. Satoru Iwata, has passed away at the age of 55. Nintendo of Japan, released this information publicly just a short time ago.
Iwata-san, was the fourth CEO and President of Nintendo, and in April 2013 he was also named CEO of Nintendo of America. He joined Nintendo full-time in 1983 after graduating from college and worked in development house, HAL Laboratory, becoming the company’s coordinator of software development. Iwata-san worked diligently rising through the ranks to be promoted to President of HAL Laboratory in 1993, to head of the corporate planning division of Nintendo in 2000. He then went on to be named the company’s fourth President and CEO in May of 2002 while also continuing to consult for HAL Laboratory.
Iwata-san was at the helm of the company which saw the development of Nintendo into the most openly communicative company in the gaming industry. We would hear from Mr. Iwata and company often throughout the year in the form of Iwata Asks columns, Nintendo Direct presentations as well as more recently Nintendo Treehouse Live presentations.
Last year, it should be noted that Mr. Iwata fell ill due to a growth on his bile duct, that he had removed. That illness kept him from traveling for E3 2014. Though he did not travel for E3 in 2015, his illness was not reported to be the cause. Mr. Iwata will indeed be sorely missed as his presence was a very calming influence for many Nintendo fans in whichever capacity it was shown.
What are your fondest memories of Mr. Iwata? What games will you play in honor of him this week? Be safe and honor him well.
As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!
Rest in Peace, Mr. Satoru Iwata!