Kaneta Kimotsuki's Colleagues Remember Him Fondly at Memorial Service
posted on by Eric Stimson
On October 20, voice actor Kaneta Kimotsuki (Suneo in Doraemon, the conductor in Galaxy Express 999, Iyami in Osomatsu-kun) died of pneumonia at age 80. A meeting to reflect on his life was held on February 6 in the Tōbu Hotel in Shibuya, Tokyo. Over 200 friends, colleagues and acquaintances attended and honored his memory by reflecting on his career, personality, and character. They included several prominent figures in anime in the 1970s.
Leiji Matsumoto, creator of Galaxy Express 999:
Kokura in North Kyushu built a statue of the conductor thanks to Kaneta Kimotsuki voicing him. Anyone who sees that will hear Kimotsuki in their hearts. 999 is a journey without an end, so it will continue on from here. It will be very sad, but I'd like to keep the conductor going while hearing Kimotsuki's voice in my head.
Fujiko Fujio A (Motoo Abiko), creator of Kaibutsu-kun and Ninja Hattori-kun, offered this toast:
He was skinny, but always energetic and smiling, so it was very much a shock when I found out he passed away. I'm not so much sad as lonely.
Masako Nozawa (Tetsurō in Galaxy Express 999, Kaibutsu-kun in Kaibutsu-kun, Enma-kun in Dororon Enma-kun; center, above):
I performed along with Kimo-chan an awful lot. When I mentioned that to him, he'd say, "I always get child roles." But in private he was a person you could count on. He always wanted to ride the 999, but Maetel said that as a conductor, he'd have to ride all different kinds of trains.
Tomokazu Seki (Kimotsuki's successor as Suneo in Doraemon):
Kimotsuki was a lecturer at the school I went to. Kimotsuki the lecturer projected a completely different image from Kimotsuki-as-Suneo, so I wondered how he could play him. I actually got the chance to watch him perform, and I was surprised at how much he seemed like a kid from behind. I think someday I'll have to grow old like that, acting like a kid.
Kappei Yamaguchi (Inuyasha in Inuyasha, Usopp in One Piece, Shin'ichi in Case Closed), while in tears:
Listening to everyone's remembrances, I can feel how loved my teacher was by all. We fought a lot, we had many disagreements, but he taught me the ins and outs when I came to Tokyo to become an actor. If it wasn't for Kimo-san, I wouldn't be who I am now. I still haven't given anything back to him, but I hope that as a disciple of Kaneta Kimotsuki, doing my best in my industry pays off my debt to him.
The service also played a video of some of Kimotsuki's characters, including Tonoma in Dokaben and Iyami in Osomatsu-kun, transporting the guests back to a simpler and humbler time.