The passing of Koji Wada as made many fans around the world tear up, as the legendary Japanese singer has touched the lives of many, especially their childhoods. The 42-year old singer passed away after a long battle with cancer, and his friends and colleagues in the industry came out to talk about the man who has touched their lives.
Here are a few of their testimonials:
Koji Wada, you did a good job. I wish for your happiness in the next world from the bottom of my heart. Please have a peaceful rest.
–Junya Enoki (Digimon Adventure tri.’s Takeru Takaishi)
Hearing about Koji Wada’s death, my heart is filled with grief. As someone involved in Digimon Adventure and as a fan myself, I’ve been saved by, and given dreams and strength through Wada’s song “Butter-fly” as well as his other songs. I hold pride in the fact that we lived at the same time, and held dreams in the same work.
–Junya Ikeda (Digimon Adventure tri.’s Joe Kido)
I only had the chance to meet Koji Wada once in person, but… Good job up until now. He performed the theme song for “Digimon Frontier,” a work I participated mid-way in. I’m happy to have been able to hear his singing voice live.
–Ryotaro Okiayu (Digimon Frontier’s RhodoKnightmon)
It appears that Koji Wada has passed away… I provided the composition for the Digimon Savers opening theme song, “Hirari.” I remember how happy I was to meet him at the 2014 Anisama concert. It’s such a shame. I wish for his happiness in the afterlife.
–IKUO (bassist for BULL ZEICHEN 88, Cube-Ray, Rayflower,The Choppers Revolution)
I heard that Koji Wada passed away. I think he was a part of not just mine, but many people’s childhood. I love Wada’s voice; it was one that gave courage to so many people. I wish for his happiness in the afterlife.
–Minami Takahashi (seiyuu, Trefle idol)
I heard of Koji Wada’s passing. Trefle’s major debut single was a cover of “Butter-Fly.” He even gave us a direct message on the CD’s obi band, even though he was ill. I will continue to sing this song with the greatest care. I wish for his happiness in the afterlife.
-Yukari Goto (voice actress, Trefle idol)
I will listen to “Butter-Fly.” I always have, and I always will. Forever. I wish for your happiness in the afterlife.
–Hiroki Yasumoto (Digimon: Data Squad’s Franz Norstein)
Koji Wada. Do you know how many people around the world continue to receive support by listening to your singing voice? You are the anime song singer I respect, and my real-life hero.
Koji Wada was 42 and from Kyoto. He was the exact same age as me, and from the same place… It’s such a shame to lose someone so young. I know I’m at an age where I could also die at any time, but it really is too soon. I wish for your happiness in the afterlife.
–Hiroyuki Hashimoto (director, Is the order a rabbit?)
After seeing the news about [Wada’s] passing, I can’t help but think that it’s such a shame. I give my deepest sympathy.
–Ichiro Mizuki (singer, Mazinger Z franchise)
Koji Wada has been called to heaven. He was a very peaceful and kind person. I want to sing together again.
–Masami Okui (singer, Revolutionary Girl Utena, Di Gi Charat, Shirobako)
I worked together with Koji Wada many times during concerts and recordings.
I remember very clearly when we had a huge snowball fight despite our age in Shinjuku where the snow had piled up right after a meeting there in the middle of winter.
I won’t forget your unique singing voice, that almost sounded like you were squeezing out everything you had.
–IMAJO (Psychic Lover guitarist)
Koji Wada, thank you for all the effort you put in fighting your illness for so long. This is the same singer Wada that gulped down Wadaya sake, I won’t forget that. I won’t forget when you asked us to sing “Butter-fly” together. Please sing your favorite song in heaven!! It’s heartbreaking to think I won’t see your smiling face.
–Yoshiyuki “Yoffy” Wada (Psychic Lover vocalist)
I’ll never forget the excitement of the large chorus when “Butter-fly” was performed at Anisama 2014. I wish for your happiness in the afterlife.
–Maon Kurosaki (singer, The Fruit of Grisaia, Highschool of the Dead)
Doesn’t that bring tears to your eyes? For me personally, his song made me want to rock out and dance when I was still in 5th grade, and I could never forget Butter-fly, or even Biggest Dreamer for that matter, and both songs will forever remain in my heart.
A private memorial service will be held for the singer’s family and friends, while his agency, Solid Vox, will be holding a memorial event for fans later this month called the “Wada Kouji Owakare no Kai” or the Kouji Wada Farewell Event. No exact date for this memorial service for fans has been announced as of writing.
Aside from his career-defining Butter-fly song, the talented singer was also responsible for the theme songs for Digimon Adventure 02, Digimon Tamers, Digimon Frontier, Digimon: Data Squad, and Digimon Xros Wars. He also performed the theme song the OP theme song of the Japanese version of Transformers: Robots in Disguise.