Tokujiro Namikoshi, a pioneer of shiatsu massage whose clients included Marilyn Monroe, died of lung cancer early Monday at a hospital in Tokyo’s Bunkyo Ward, his family said. He was 94.
A native of Kagawa Prefecture, Namikoshi headed the Shiatsu Therapy Association of Japan and Japan Shiatsu College.
Namikoshi, generally credited with popularizing shiatsu, became a celebrity after treating Monroe while she was on a trip to Japan in 1954.
From 1968, Namikoshi appeared on television, gaining popularity with his catch-phrase “Shiatsu no kokoro wa hahagokoro” (The soul of shiatsu is a mother’s soul).
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