Remembering Tom Anzai

It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing of our friend Tom Anzai.


Tom was the founder and race director of our annual Riverkeeper 4K swim. He had a vision to swim from one shore of the historic Ottawa River to the other, swam it, then invited all fellow swimmers to participate in what he called an epic charity event. His passion for the event was contagious. He didn’t miss an opportunity to speak not only of the swim, but also of the importance of a healthy Ottawa River. Tom exemplified dedication and community service. We will remember him fondly.


Our thoughts are with the Anzai family and the greater Ottawa swimming community. A heartfelt thank you to the family for proposing Ottawa Riverkeeper as an option for donations in Tom’s name.

5 responses to “Remembering Tom Anzai”

  1. Frank Jarman says:

    I’ve know Tom through work since 2004. He was always a gentleman and a man of honor. I am so sorry to hear of his passing.

  2. Gordon Kirk says:

    I knew Tom as a young boy in Peterborough (and may have even had a hand in teaching him how to swim, at this early age). We lost touch but I’m so glad he continued to swim and be actively involved with teaching others to excel at this sport. As a youngster, he was always happy and dedicated; endearing traits which it seems he maintained into his adult life. I’m sure he will be greatly missed by all who had the good fortune to know him.

  3. Ellice Fancher says:

    I worked with Tom for the last eight years at Airbus DS Communications and had the awesome opportunity to travel with him at times to help bring our products to 9-1-1 Centers around North America. Tom and I would keep each other laughing at the other about our different accents, his Canadian “ah” and my Georgian “y’all”. I would drag him to see sights such as the longhorn cow run down the streets of Fort Worth in Texas and he was always trying to get me to go swimming but 5:30 am was just too early for me. Our company especially his training coworkers will miss his expertise, willingness to help us, and crazy sense of humor. My prayers will be with the family as they try to recover from their great loss. Our team will be making a donation to help carry on his passions.

  4. Jeremy Eskritt says:

    Thank you so much for the wonderful video you shared with friends and family at Tom’s Celebration of Life. You captured Tom, and undoubtedly helped many of us as we grieve. Word around the room was that you can expect a lot of pool swimmers working to keep our river swimmable at future events!

  5. Amy Hogan says:

    Tom was an amazing individual and highly respected by myself and likely everyone he encountered. My thoughts and prayers go out to the Anzai family.