Thinley Namgay  

His Royal Highness Prince Jigyel Ugyen Wangchuck, President of Bhutan Olympic Committee (BOC) and Her Royal Highness Princess Eeuphelma Choden Wangchuck, President of Bhutan Paralympic Committee (BPC) offered karmey and moenlam at the Samteling Palace lhakhang in Thimphu yesterday for late Yasuo Miyazawa.

Yasuo Miyazawa, 72,  was the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Japan’s SEISA Group. He passed away on March 23 in Japan.

Yasuo Miyazawa was a close friend to the BOC and BPC. He supported the development of sports in Bhutan since the 1990s. 

In March 2019, he was appointed the honorary advisor to the BOC in recognition of his support and contribution to the development of sports.

According to BOC officials, Yasuo Miyazawa and SEISA Group helped strengthen the future of sports education and development in Bhutan. “He was also instrumental in the establishment of the BPC to provide people living with disabilities the opportunity to participate and excel in sports.”

“We offer our heartfelt prayers and sincerely hope that amidst all the grief, the family and friends of late Miyazawa and the SEISA family will draw comfort from all the warm and loving memories and enduring happiness that he has brought into all of our lives,” the BOC press release said.

Yasuo Miyazawa founded the SEISA group in 1972 and currently operates more than 30 educational institutes from nursery schools to universities throughout Japan, including the Foundation for Global Children.

Currently, three Bhutanese athletes are training and studying in Japan through the support of SEISA.

Meanwhile,  members of the Bhutanese sports fraternity recalled him with gratitude and fondness.

Bhutan Archery Federation’s (BAF) Programme Officer Pema Zangmo said Miyazawa San was BAF’s biggest supporter and has helped many athletes realise their dreams.

“He was a role model for them. He was a man worthy of all the respect,” Pema Zangmo said.

A member of the national archery team, Karma said Yasuo Miyazawa was kind, brave, generous, and very active even in his 70s. “He was like a father to me. I am deeply saddened to hear about his demise. He helped BAF in many ways, and his words inspired me.”