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6-05-2010 - Johnny Thorn remembers Roy Iwake (below the photo)

See Roy's cuke interview. Roy sat with Shunryu Suzuki back when we were starting Tassajara. I met again him decades later through John Tarrant. He helped us out with some electrical work here at Tarrantland. Farewell Roy. - dc

Warm greetings fellow mourners of Roy Iwaki,

Our treasured stern friend with an imposing samurai exterior and the
generous heart of a child passed on May 24 in a bicycle crash down an
11 degree grade in Richmond, Ca. Roy had been given a bicycle by an
older man living in the same village that was built during WWII to
house the 3,000 builders of Liberty ships. Roy's much loved dog "YO
YO" had died only two weeks prior so Roy had begun bicycle riding as
an alternative to walking Yo Yo.

All of us who knew Roy noted a memorable blend of impeccable precision
and a comfort with relaxed housekeeping and funk. He loved to
frequent 'Urban Ore' to discover whatever discarded treasures he might
incorporate into a job that he was doing, to offer to a friend, or to
save for possible future use. With such a endearing and (especially
for the OCD folks) unconventionally casual style of life; we mourners
can easily imagine that the free bicycle was in mechanically
questionable condition.

A particularly touching aspect of the timing of Roy's passing was the
long delayed recognition for his astoundingly original and captivating
paper sculpture...'curvex round folding' by the international origami
society. Roy was in the process of making arrangements with his dear
friends Al and Shiomi Longo to go to New York where Roy was to be
acknowledge and honored for his expansive creative insights into
pushing the envelope of what was possible with paper sculpture.

More impressive than his profound artistic gifts was Roy's integrity
of character. Roy held many noteworthy archetypes for those of us who
were blessed to know him: a friend, a lover, a mentor, a trickster, a
comedian, Santa Claus, an innovator, insightful critic, uncle,
brother, and coach. Roy never ceased to be a teacher of generosity,
honesty, and kindness.

May all of us that are in our tender circle of mourning gather to
honor his life and legacy on Sunday, July 18th at an, as yet,
undisclosed location for a full day of sharing stories, pictures,
dance, meditation, and creative offerings and delicious pot luck food.
Roy loved to entertain with abandon. Please spread the word and be
inspired to share stories and pictures on David Chadwick's web site
which he has generously offered to create a space where our dispersed
community of mourners may partially assuage the agony of our loss.

For those of us who may be inspired to offer physical and emotional
support to the handling of Roy's Estate, consider using the email to
make contact with Roy's primary surviving essential relative...Michio
who is Roy's nephew. He can be reached at: He is carrying the arduous task of
dealing with all of Roy's creations and gathered 'treasures' which
number in the 1,000s.

May all of us gather our practiced powers to stretch them across the
abyss to move closer to our original nature which Roy modeled so

With opened tender grieving heart....

Johnny C. Thorn

To see what was added to this site in earlier months Land years, go to  What Was New:  1999, 2000-2001,  2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008


what's new this year

There's a lot of old material that's as good as new if you haven't read it. -DC

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