Richard Yoshio (Dick) Nakamura
May 11, 1924 - October 08, 2018
Share Richard's life story with friends and family
Send an Email
Or Copy this URL to Share
It is with deep sadness that our family announces the passing of Richard (Dick) Yoshio Nakamura. Dick is survived by his four children Richard (Lily Jer-Nakamura), Joanne (Mitch Rollins), Janice (Kerry Wadsworth), Lisa (Andrew Sewell); grandchildren Carmen Rollins (William Vigil Oliver), Sarah Rollins (Marc Foucher), Kerice Wadsworth, Elliot and Hideki Sewell; his sisters Toshiko Nagata, Tamiko Hasegawa and many dear nieces and nephews. Dick was predeceased by his wife Anne Nakamura, his parents Yuki and Jukichi Nakamura and his brother Kayo Yamamoto.

Dick was born in Comox, BC and grew up in Surrey where his family farmed strawberries until 1942 when Canadians of Japanese heritage were forcibly removed from the coast. The Nakamura family was moved to southern Alberta, where they laboured on a sugar beet farm.

Dick joined the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1948 and trained as a photographer. In 1954, Dick married Anne Ayako Maeno in Lethbridge and the following year moved to Regina where they raised their family. In Regina, Dick worked for the Government of Canada's Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration (PFRA) and was a member of the Regina Rifle Regiment. Early retirement to Victoria in 1979 produced exciting opportunities to work for Tourism BC, to be the Protocol Officer for BC Ferries during Expo 86 and to serve the Royal Canadian Navy as a liaison with the Japanese Naval Self Defense Force Training Squadron's Pacific tours.

Family, fishing and service were central to Dick's life. He was a dedicated husband, Dad, Grandpa, Uncle and friend. He was very proud to have served in the Royal Canadian Air Force, Navy, militia, and the public services of both Canada and British Columbia. Dick was an active organizer and leader in the broader community and the Japanese Canadian community. He was deeply committed to Victoria's sister city relationship with Morioka, Japan.

Dick believed strongly in the importance of family and of enhancing communities and futures through improved human rights and race relations and through building bridges between Canadian and Japanese people and cultures. The recipient of numerous awards, he was made an Honourary Citizen of the City of Victoria, awarded the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal, Japan's Order of the Rising Sun and Morioka's Bridge Over the Pacific Prize. A natural extrovert and optimist, he loved a good meal, people to talk to, a new project to develop or any opportunity to fish.

Many thanks to the wonderful nurses and staff at the Lodge at Broadmead, who provided Dick with excellent care.

A celebration of life will be held on Sunday, October 28th, 2018 from 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm at the Beach House Restaurant, 5109 Cordova Bay Road, Victoria BC.

In lieu of flowers or koden, please consider supporting the Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society, the Victoria-Morioka Friendship Society, the Nikkei National Museum or the Broadmead Care Society.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in The Times Colonist from Oct. 16 to Oct. 22, 2018.
Not sure what to say?
7 entries
November 26, 2018
So sorry to hear of Dick's passing. Such a kind and vibrant man. He will be greatly missed. I met Dick through the VIJC Society and remember his warm presence. On one occasion, Dick invited us to join him on a Japanese naval training ship in Esquimalt for a feast. Thanks Dick!
Marlene Mortensen
October 25, 2018
Thanks for serving
Larry Belzac
October 20, 2018
Sending condolences to you,Joanne and family.
Shelley Tamaki
October 20, 2018
I first met Dick when he was on the Board of Directors of the Inter-Cultural Association and I was the Executive Director. We later worked in different ways on the issue of Japanese-Canadian Redress. He was cheerful, optimistic and a dedicated Canadian. He even taught me that Nanaimo was Japanese for 7 potatoes. He was a good guy and my sincere condolences to his family.
Bill McElroy
October 18, 2018
I am so sad to hear the news. Dick was such an important pillar of our community & will be greatly missed.
My fondest memory with Dick was when a Japanese Navy ship came to town -- Dick & several of us went onto the ship to meet with the crew. Dick was so gracious & represented our community so well.
My heart goes out to all his family & friends.
Valerie Watanabe
Valerie Watanabe
October 18, 2018
All Japanese Show' 'n Shine circa 2014
I had the great pleasure of knowing Dick for many years through the Victoria Morioka Friendship Society. He was gentleman, and a tireless champion of exchange visits between the two cities. I will miss him.
Jin Nicholl
October 16, 2018
Myself and Dr Griffin had the great privilege of working with Dick in the early years of the Nikkei centre and as he worked towards the first travelling exhibit. He was a remarkable, very direct honourable man with a great sense of humour. Dick was fully engaged with life and looking for positive outcomes and believed and worked for a better Canada.
Dr. Lorne Hammond
Share to let others add their own memories and condolences