Riichi Koizumi

It is with very saddened hearts that we announce the passing of Riichi Koizumi. Riichi passed away at New Horizons Care Home on November 20, 2014.

Riichi is predeceased by his parents, Yojiro and Take. He will be dearly missed by his loving wife of 68 years, Emiko and his eight children, Eileen Swanson (Gerald), Marvin Koizumi (Sharon), Karen Eagleston (Wayne), Tom Koizumi (Dorothy), Douglas Koizumi, Art Koizumi, Ernie Koizumi (Renee), and Ken Koizumi (Kari); his ten grandchildren, James, Kelly, Ryan, Eric (Kate), Blair (Crystal), Madison, Derek, Jordan, Emiko Marie, and Kobe; his two great grandsons, Evan and Raiden and his great granddaughter, Leah; his brother Bob and family and brother, Ted.

Riichi was born at Claxton Cannery, Prince Rupert. At age 8, his mother decided her three sons needed an education and moved them to Strawberry Hill (an area of Delta). There they grew 3 acres of strawberries and 2 acres of other fruit along with 2000 laying hens.

War broke out and they were given two choices for relocation. One was to work in the sugar beet fields in Alberta or Manitoba and the other was to cut logs in the ghost towns of the Kootenays. The family chose Balmoral, Manitoba in the hopes of keeping the family together. His father had passed away in 1938, leaving a very young family. Riichi had said, “Let’s go as far as the train goes and see what’s there.”

Riichi and his family were very fortunate in being sent to work on the farm of Sidney Main who treated the family with kindness and respect.

Since Emiko and her family were relocated to Emerson, Manitoba, Riichi and his family moved to Emerson in November of 1945.

It wasn’t long before Riichi decided he would be a sugar beet farmer. With financial help from a couple area farmers, this decision was highly successful and at one time Riichi was the largest acreage sugar beet farmer in the Dominion of Canada. To his credit, he developed the space-seeding plate for beet seeds. He was the first beet farmer to use the deer-tong in conjunction with the single rib tire. He was a source of employment as he had an average of 50 employees once the crops were seeded until they were harvested.

Having been evacuated, his children always knew the day would come when he and mom would “go home”. That is, back to B.C. In 1977, they moved with their four youngest children to Campbell River and soon became the owner/operators of Lucky Louie Boat Rentals and Charters. Another thirteen great, fun years in his life!

Riichi was an avid sportsman. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, being a Southpaw baseball pitcher, a lightweight junior golden glove boxer, and curler. He was a life member of the Emerson Curling Club and as a volunteer; he made curling ice for 27 years. He and his team had the honor of curling against four time world champions, the Ernie Richardson Team of Saskatchewan. Riichi also served on the council for the town of Emerson.

Highly respected by those who knew him;

forever loved and remember as:

“Friend of All and Foe of None”

Our deepest gratitude to all of Riichi’s caregivers at New Horizons with special thanks to the original staff who cared for him at the beginning of his journey at New Horizon’s and also his former caregivers at Sunshine Lodge and Dr. deBruin.

A Service of Remembrance will be at a later date. Island Funeral Services/Elk Falls Crematorium entrusted with arrangements.

If you so desire, a donation to Canuck Place would be appreciated.Canuck Place, Children’s Hospice, 1690 Matthews Ave., Vancouver, B.C. V6I 2T2.

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