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Thousands Pay Their Respect to Nintendo's Iwata During 2-Day Funeral Service

posted on by Lynzee Loveridge

Thousands of mourning friends and family attended the funeral of late Nintendo company president Satoru Iwata at a temple in Kyoto, Japan this week. The first day drew 2,600 visitors and the second day brought 1,500. Mourners carried umbrellas to combat the downpour from an incoming typhoon and their Nintendo 3DS mobile gaming consoles.

Nintendo representative directors Genyo Takeda and Shigeru Miyamoto delivered Iwata's eulogy. Takeda stated that Nintendo would complete Iwata's work and the seeds the late president planted would grow into flowers "that will make people around the world smile."

The Nintendo World Store in New York set aside an area for visitors to leave their messages for Iwata. The sign outside the Nintendo headquarters in Redmond, Washington is also accumulating gifts and messages.

Game designer Yutaka "Yoot" Saito expressed his thoughts on Iwata's passing in a blog post on Monday.

Iwata-san, when I later saw you appear before the press, I was really happy to see that you had recovered, but it looks like the gods aren't that lenient… Tezuka-san (from Nintendo) suggested that I make an appointment to see you, but I couldn't find the nerve to do so. Now, after all my hesitation, I've learned that we truly passed each other by, and I'll never be able to see you again. I wish I had a StreetPass feature that could connect with heaven. I would run out and buy a DS with that feature right now just so I could send you my thanks. Yeah, I know that sounds a bit too convenient for me. When I left the Seaman project, I sent you a book and a letter. Whether you actually read them or not has been on my mind ever since. Also, I'm really sorry for being late with Odama, causing it to completely miss the window for it to be a success. There's so much more I want to tell you, but I really don't know what to do with myself after hearing about your sudden departure in the news.

Life is always just a succession of regrets.

Iwata-san, thank you for everything. I don't typically look up to a lot of people, but I really respected you. I would always be thinking from afar just how amazing of a person you are. It's cliché to say this, but please rest in peace.

I'm still here, and although I almost lost hope in regards to being a creator and life in general, I think I want to challenge myself once more.

Iwata-san, thank you for so many things.

You can read a full, translated version of the post here.

Iwata saw the start of his gaming career at HAL Laboratory, developing known classics like Earthbound and the Kirby franchise. As CEO of Nintendo, he pioneered many gaming innovations such as the Nintendo DS and introducing motion control to games with the Nintendo Wii. He often served as the face of Nintendo Direct, which were short online press conferences that showed off upcoming Nintendo titles. Many Nintendo Directs placed Iwata in quirky and humorous situations such as an intense mock battle with Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime back at E3 2014.

Source: The Wall Street Journal's Japan Real Time blog, Kotaku


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