AAOS Remembers Dr. Koyama


The Asian American Optometric Society issued the following statement on Dr. Ryan Yonny Koyama, who died in an automobile accident on Sept. 18 at the age of 69:

Image from a video in which George Barris talks to Yonny Koyama, who owned a 1959 Bonneville customized by Barris and his brother Sam in the early 1960s.

“Dr. Koyama was a founding charter member of AAOS, the Asian American Optometric Society, formerly JAOS, Japanese American Optometric Society, in 1972.

“The professional organization started out as a 34-member group of doctors that had the purpose ‘to promote the social, cultural, scientific and educational interchange of information and experiences among its members.’ Today, the organization is 200-plus members strong.

“He was a very talented magician, a member of the Magic Castle in Hollywood.

“He was considered an expert on Japanese katanas, traditionally-made Japanese swords, often referred to as ‘samurai swords.’ In fact, he was able to provide the history of a katana possessed by a colleague and repair a holster for one of the swords.

“He had a passion for custom cars from his teen years. Here is a YouTube clip about that.

“Yonny had a passion for art, especially wood-working. Some of his works include the bar and tropical-themed art hanging from the walls and ceiling at Cherrystone Grill in Gardena and the Japanese-themed three-dimensional art at Yamabuki Sushi in Torrance.”

Survivors include his wife, Sachi; children, Leslie and John; and siblings, Marilyn and Sanford. A remembrance was held Sept. 25 at Green Hills Memorial Park in Rancho Palos Verdes. A celebration of his life will be held at a later date. Sign the guestbook at www.dailybreeze.com/obits.



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