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Yutaka Atagi

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Yutaka Atagi

July 26, 1929 - February 22, 2016


In the early evening of Monday February 22, 2016 Yute Atagi, 86, passed away in Nelson, BC at Mountain Lake Seniors Community after a brief but courageous battle with brain cancer.  He was comforted by the company of family and friends.  He was predeceased by his wife Ruth, older sisters (Ayako, Kimiko and Mariko) and his parents (Kiyomatsu and Kane).  He will be forever remembered by his sons Gene (Susanne) of Campbell River, BC and Dana (Valerie) of Smithers, BC.  Yute was born in Campbell River, BC and spent his childhood in Quathiaski Cove on Quadra Island before his family was interned in Kaslo, BC beginning in 1942.  He graduated from Kaslo High School in 1947 and was married in 1962. 

He spent nearly 39 years working for the Canadian Pacific Railway in the Bridge & Building gangs in the East and West Kootenays before retiring in 1986 as a B&B foreman where he forged many lifelong friendships.  He was a talented tradesman who was a jack of many trades (carpenter, pipefitter, welder, plumber etc.).  Yute and Ruth and their boys loved to camp and fish but Yute’s passion was angling.  This stemmed from the Atagi family’s historic roots in the wooden boat building and commercial fishing industries on the BC coast.  Yute and his family fished Kootenay Lake and the waters around Quadra Island and Campbell River.  Yute passed the fishing bug on to his sons.  Yute and Ruth loved the community of friends they made up at Schroeder Creek Resort.  His hand-turned Cedar plugs were coveted by all who were fortunate enough to receive them.  He fished many years on the waters near Campbell River in search of the elusive 30 pound “Tyee” Chinook salmon and the waters of Kootenay Lake in search of “Walter” the 25 pound Gerrard rainbow trout.  He did catch his Tyee salmon (several times over) but he never did catch “Walter” although he came pretty close on several occasions! 

He will be remembered as a quiet, kind, caring, and gentle man who cared deeply about family and friends.  He was committed to the well-being of the Atagi family and he looked after the young and the old.  He was a committed husband to Ruth and they shared nearly 60 years together.  Yute was the quiet patriarch of the Atagi Clan.  He will be greatly missed by his sons, his friends and his Gore Street family. 

A celebration of life will be held on May 14, 2016 at 300 pm in the chapel at Thompson Funeral Service (613 Ward Street, Nelson, BC).  Special thanks go to Dr. R. Milde who gave wonderful care to Dad over the years and to Dr. T. Janz and the compassionate nurses and care aids at Mountain Lake Seniors Community and Kootenay Lake Hospital and who made Yute’s last days comfortable.  Condolences to the family may be left at www.thompsonfs.ca. 

Yute fished Kootenay Lake for 60 years for Gerrard rainbow trout, kokanee and bull trout and he was very supportive of the recent rebuilding initiative for the kokanee and rainbow trout fisheries.  In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made online to the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation (http://www.hctf.ca/donate) or by sending a cheque to the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation (#107- 19 Dallas Road, Victoria, BC V8V 5A6).  The family requests that you indicate that it is in memory of Yutaka Atagi to support fisheries conservation and restoration activities on Kootenay Lake.


Send a condolence, light a candle and/or share a memory, click "Send Condolence". Once your message has been approved by the moderator it will be posted to the website.

From: Thompson Funeral Service Staff

Thompson Funeral Service Staff send our condolences to family and friends.

From: Joe Ringrose
Relation: aquaintence

I was sorry to hear of Yutes passing. I have fond memories of Yute growing when he worked with my Father. We were always happy to see him and he always had time to converse with us kids. We had a good visit last summer as I hadn’t seen him for years. He was truly a gentleman and will be missed by all who new him..

From: Derrick (Yogi) MacDonald
Relation: Fellow railroader

So sorry to hear about his passing. I have many memories of stories we shared around the ‘coffee’ fire. He was a pleasure to work with. My deepest sympathy to his family.

From: Mary Atkinson
Relation: Friend

Gene, Dana and family. Sorry to hear of the passing of your father. He was a very special friend to Ken and I. I have many fond memories of him. You and your families are in my prayer at this difficult time.

From: Linda Zeznik
Relation: family friend

Gene, Dana & Family
I feel so sorry for you to lose your Dad.
Although I never knew him except through Rich, I gathered that he was a very beautiful person. Gene, I know he passed that on to you as well as many other attributes.
You have been in my thoughts since I heard of his illness.
Blessings and Love to you all.

From: Isao Furukawa
Relation: Childhood Friend

So sorry to hear about Yutaka’s passing. We were childhood friends from Kaslo. My condolences to the family.

Service Schedule

  Funeral Service

Date & Time:
May 14, 2016
Beginning at 3:00pm

Chapel of Thompson Funeral Service
613 Ward Street
Nelson, BC Canada V1L 1T2

613 Ward Street
Nelson, BC Canada V1L 1T2

Memorial Gifts

The family has not designated a preferred charity at this time.

Thank You Notice

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Phone: (250) 352-5592

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