Japan’s Station Master Cat Dies At 16, Nation Mourns Loss

Station master tama, tama ekicho

Netizens are in shock at the news that Tama-ekicho, or “Station Master Tama”, the cat who became station master of Wakayama Railways, had died at the age of 16.

Tama became a well-known feline figure throughout Japan and beyond, and there is no doubt that he will be sorely missed. Rest in peace, Tama-ekicho!

From Yahoo! Japan:

“Station Master Tama” The Tortoise-Shell Cat Dies; Wakayama Railways To Give Him Company Funeral

It was reported on June 24 that “Station Master Tama”, the tortoiseshell cat of Wakayama Railways who gained worldwide popularity had died. He was 16 years old. His funeral will be carried out by those closest to him. On June 28, he will also be given a company funeral.

After celebrating his birthday on April 29 this year, Tama had been receiving medical treatment since May 19 for nasal inflammation; on 22 June Tama died of sudden heart failure while in hospital.

maneki-neko effect”, recently he also contributed to tourism in the region due to sightseers coming to visit him from all over the world.




Credit: TORU YAMANAKA/AFP/Getty Images

Credit: TORU YAMANAKA/AFP/Getty Images

Comments from Twitter:

✳️ヱウレカ✳️ :

Rest in peace, Station Master Tama.

まー@冬眠→春眠移行中 ‏:

Station Master Tama, you did a great job. May you always play in high places!

W.Hosaka aka Mr.Cid ‏:

From about last month they said he was resting, and he’d disappeared from limelight, so I did wonder if something might have happened to him, and looks like I was right…I’ll say a prayer for him.

飛龍 ‏:

[Sad News] Wakayama Railways’ “Station Master Tama” has died from sudden heart failure. He was 16, which is about 80 in human years. May he rest in peace.

いっちゃん ‏:

Station Master Tama〜(´;ω;`) When was it that I went to meet you? All you did was sleep though! So sad. He was only 16, too young…I mean, that’s just the same age as Non-tan

ネコリパブリック首相&エルクアトロギ麻花 ‏:

Station Master Tama, you did a great job. You were a cat who really showed us why humans are so fascinated by cats.

nekojournal :

You worked hard. Take it easy in heaven…

hitomi♡ ‏:

I really wanted to meet you once. Thank you for making us all happy. Rest in peace.

しろい ‏:

May his soul rest in peace.

ヒグマン@レジェンド世代 ‏:

I think he was a real-life maneki neko


Station Master Tama is dead…(゜´Д`゜)


Putting aside the debate over whether or not it was animal abuse, I think it would have been better if they’d let him retire a little earlier, and let him spend his old age relaxing. I mean, Wakayama Railways have also lost their crowd-pulling cat, so they were holding out.

Takeharu Tsukuda:

WHHHHHHHHHAAA?! Station Master Tama is dead…bit of a shock.


For real?…such a pity. He showed us how local railways lines could come back to life. What’s going to happen to the Kishigawa Line now?


I thought he must have been pretty old, but he’s already crossed the rainbow bridge, huh? This is extremely sad news (O)

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  • UserID01

    Poor cat didn’t even get to retire and collect his pension.

    • Tama

      I didn’t work in the first place, just sat still. How could I get to retire?

      • UserID01

        I could say the same of a lot of guards working in this city!

  • Ideas2Disqus

    16 year old cat. RIP.

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