Ken Shimura Dead: The First High-Profile Victim of Coronavirus in Japan

The coronavirus outbreak does not discriminate. Sadly, we are receiving news about celebrities and artists being affected by the disease all across the globe. Another death that brought tears to the eyes of many people is Ken Shimura, a famous Japanese comedian. Ken, aged 70, recently succumbed to the virus after several days in ICU in Tokyo.

His career started over half a century ago in the 1970s. He always managed to make people laugh with his interesting physical performances and cleverly written sketches. Unfortunately, as he was amongst the pioneers of the comedy genre in Japan, he was also one of the first to be diagnosed with the deadly virus.

The comedian was diagnosed with a very dangerous case of pneumonia on March 23. Just a couple hours later he was tested for the novel coronavirus and the test returned positive.


His co-workers and fans left many heartbreaking responses to his untimely death. People expressed how they were happy to work alongside him. Ken became an important, integral part of the comedic troupe called The Drifters. After a couple of collaborations, he replaced a famous comedian and musician Chu Arai in the band.

Up until his hospitalization, Ken Shimura continued working and was promoting his most recent project on national television — Tensai! — and a new movie that was about to come out at the beginning of April.



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