Manga artist Hiroyuki Shoji passed away on October 20th, as Shueisha’s Miracle Jump magazine bore the sad duty of reporting. It’s been confirmed that he died in a cycling accident, after police were called to Gose city, Nara prefecture where he’d been found lying bleeding from his head.
At around 9:50pm that day, a passerby found him lying on the street beside his bicycle, and called emergency services. Local police soon identified him as Shoji, who died at the hospital one hour later. As no major damage was found on the bicycle, and Shoji was found in a flat area after a steep incline, police presume he was riding at high speed on the hill before he fell and hit his head. He had told his family beforehand that he’d planned to go cycling in Wakayama prefecture.
Shoji’s manga Zassou Kazoku had been serialised in Miracle Jump from April of this year, publishing only seven chapters before his passing at the age of 46. He’d also launched the 10-sai Kaa-san manga in Monthly Comic Flapper in July. He debuted as a mangaka with his ‘Koroshi no Licence’ story in 1997, which won him the Chibi Tetsuya newcomer’s award. His first series, The Life of Ichabod, was published in Kodansha’s Afternoon from 2000-2002, and he went on to create several more series, including Kagefumi-san, See You the Next Life, Gokko, Poponepo the Crime King, Sokubakuai ~Kareshi o Hikikomaraseru 100 no Houhou and Meta Love. The latter ran in Kodansha’s Monthly Morning two from 2014-2016, and its third volume was published in April.
Born in Moriguchi city in Osaka, where he’d come to spend his whole life, he did his hometown, loved ones and readers proud with his creations. May he rest in peace.