Who Is Akira Toriyama’s Wife? Explore His Relationship, Age, Net Worth, And Death


Akira Toriyama. the late Dragon Ball creator, had 2 children with his wife, Yoshimi

Akira Toriyama, hailed as one of the greatest manga artists, died in March 2024 at the age of 68. He left behind his wife, Yoshimi Katō, and their two children, a son and a daughter.

The Dragon Ball creator and his wife were married for over forty years and always remained by his side. Yoshimi did everything to ensure her husband’s success- from supporting Toriyama to quitting her job to care for their family.

Many might not know, but the Shogakukan Manga Awardee‘s partner is a former manga artist. She even helped him create the iconic character Andriod 18 of his popular manga-turned-animated series, Dragon Ball.

There is no denying that his rich history of more than four decades earned him a chunk of money; his net worth is $50 million. Scroll through the entire article to learn more about Toriyama’s relationship, net worth, and family.

Quick Facts

Name Akira Toriyama
Meaning of NameBright Bird Mountain
ProfessionManga Creator
Birth PlaceKiyosu, Aichi, Japan
EthnicitySoutheast Asian
Sexual OrientationStraight
Career Active1978-2024
Social MediaNo

When Was Akira Toriyama Born? Age At The Time Of Death

Toriyama was born on April 5, 1955, in Kiyosu, Aichi, Japan, where he spent most of his formative years. At the time of his death on March 1, 2024, the Japanese manga artist was 68 years old; he was 35 days away from his 69th birthday.

Date of BirthApril 5, 1955
Date of DeathMarch 1, 2024 (at 68)
Cause Of DeathAcute Subdural Hematoma (SDH)

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What Caused Toriyama’s Death?

The news of Toriyama’s death came a week after the unfortunate incident. On March 8, 2024, his company, Bird Studio, revealed that Akira died on March 1 due to acute subdural hematoma (collection of blood between the skull and the surface of the brain).

The official website of Dragon Ball also released a statement after the manga creator’s demise, and wrote,

“We are deeply saddened to inform you that Manga creator Akira Toriyama passed away on March Ist due to acute subdural hematoma, He was in age of 68.”

Further, the statement asked viewers and the media to respect the family’s privacy and avoid visiting or approaching Akira’s family for interviews.

Dragon Ball creator Akira Toriyama, a lovable husband and father of two, died at 68 due to acute subdural hematoma
Dragon Ball creator Akira Toriyama, a lovable husband and father of two, died at 68 due to acute subdural hematoma (Source: LA Times)

In an article published by Sponichi Annex, Akira’s longtime friend, Ohkawa Tomohide, of the duo “Chicken Nanban,” stated that the late manga artist didn’t use a smartphone but communicated by email instead.

According to Ohkawa, he received an email from Toriyama in April 2023 that the latter was hospitalized for head surgery. Then, he added that Toriyama, a heavy smoker, was planning to undergo surgery for a brain tumor in February 2024.

Akira Toriyama’s Parents And Siblings: Nationality, Ethnicity, And Religion

Born to Japanese parents Karasu and Tonbi Toriyama, he grew up in the countryside of his hometown of Kiyosu, Aichi. His father owned an auto repair business, which drew his interest in cars and motorcycles.

Akira was the youngest of two children- he has an older sister, Uzura, who reportedly has at least two kids.

As for his nationality, Toriyama was Japanese and had an East Asian ethnic background. He followed Shinto religion and did mention in an interview that he ‘always turned to God in times of trouble.’

FatherKarasu Toriyama
MotherTonbi Toriyama

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Who Was Akira Toriyama Married To? Wife And Wedding Details

Toriyama was married to his Nagoya native wife, Yoshimi Kato, for 42 years until his death. They married on May 2, 1982, at Nagoya’s Reception House in a Shinto tradition; at the time, both were 27 years old.

As reported, the timeline of his marriage coincided with when he drew the wedding of his Dr. Slump characters, Senbei Norimaki and Midori Yamabuki.

According to online sources, Toriyama and Kato had a small wedding ceremony and allowed local media to take pictures only if they wrapped up in five minutes.

Late Akira Toriyama's wife Yoshimi is a former manga artist, with whom he was married from 1982 until his death
Late Akira Toriyama’s wife Yoshimi is a former manga artist, with whom he was married from 1982 until his death (Source: Twitter)

The couple allegedly met in high school in Nagoya, but they began dating in their mid-20s. According to Kanzenshuu, Arika had been seeing Yoshimi for over a year when they tied the knot.

The same sources stated that even at 27, Akira was shy of girls, while Yoshimi was an exception- to whom he could talk openly. Her ‘good personality and her concerns about his well-being’ attracted Toriyama to her.

Speaking of his thoughts on wedding, Akira made a comical statement to Focus Magazine,

“When I saw her bridal headdress, I thought I was going to burst out laughing, and in her yellow dress for the reception, she looked like a walking curtain.”

Like the Dragon Ball creator, his wife also worked as a manga artist- she went by the pen name “Nachi Mikami.” After their marriage, she gave up her career to become a homemaker and care for the family.

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Akira’s Wife Helped Him In His Manga

When his manga Dr. Slump was serialized in the Weekly Shōnen Jump, Toriya was short on time, so his wife, a former mangaka, would occasionally help him.

Before quitting her professional manga career, she notably worked in The Top and Bottom of Rock and Roll in 1977, The Confusing Legend of St. Mephisto in 1985, and Rock and Rollers’ Story: The Queen Story.

After marriage, Yoshimi Kato quit her career but worked on her husband’s Magnus opus, Dragon Ball, to aid storytelling and character designs.

Toriyama with his wife, Yoshimi Kato, and actor Jackie Chan
Toriyama with his wife, Yoshimi Kato, and actor Jackie Chan (Source: The Sun)

As reported, she inspired Akira to develop Dragon Ball, a kung fu shōnen manga, which became a best-selling manga series. Kato was the one to give the name “Kamehameha” to the manga lead’s iconic blue beam attack, inspired by the former king of Hawaii of the same name.

Moreover, Akira’s wife, Yoshimi, poured her contribution and beauty of her professionalism in making a distinct appearance of the Dragon Ball Z’s character, Andriod 18.

How Many Children Did Toriyama Have?

Together with his wife Yoshimi, Akira Toriyama became father of two children- a son, Sasuke, and a daughter, Kikka. After five years of marriage, the couple welcomed their first child, son Sasuke Toriyama, on March 23, 1987.

Three years later, they became parents to their youngest child, daughter Kikka in October 1990.

Akira Toriyama with his son, Sasuke
Akira Toriyama with his son, Sasuke (Source: Facebook)

In the wake of Toriyama’s death, a heartfelt message left by him to his kids in the mid-1990s went viral online.

During one of the endings of a 1995 role-playing game, Chrono Trigger (where he was a character designer), Akira left a sweet nod to his then-7-year-old son and 4-year-old daughter. The message read,

“Heeey! Sasuke! Kikka! Pop’s working on games like this! Hey are you guys watching? Isn’t this great?”

The Dragon Ball creator’s kids are now all grown-ups; Sasuke is 37 Years now, while Kikka is 33 Years.

While there’ve been no details or further updates, sources report that Toriyama’s son, Sasuke, will oversee his legacy. According to Comic Book’s article from July 2022, Sasuke was in charge of his dad’s legacy in the film Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero.

Marital StatusMarried (until death)
Wife’s NameYoshimi Kato (aka Nachi Mikami)
No. of Children2
Children’s Name Sasuke and Kikka Toriyama

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What Is Akira Toriyama’s Net Worth? Was A Multi-Millionaire

According to Celebrity Net Worth and other online sources, Akira Toriyama’s net worth was $50 million at the time of his death.

Considered the third among the wealthiest manga creators, Akira’s fortune stood behind Rumiko Takahashi (with $60-$70 million), the Ranma ½ and Inuyasha creator, and Echiro Oda ($200 million), the creator of One Piece.

While Toriyama worked on several projects and developed numerous manga in his career spanning over four decades, his creations, Dr. Slump and Dragon Ball, became his benchmark.

His manga series Dragon Ball became one of the best-selling mangs with sales of over 260 million copies. In the later years, it developed into an animation series and garnered a wider fanbase worldwide.

Akira Toriyama got career breakthrough from Dr. Slum and later with Dragon Ball
Akira Toriyama got a career breakthrough from Dr. Slum and later with Dragon Ball (Source: Twitter)

Aside from direct sales of his shonen manga, Akira collected a decent sum from royalties on anime series, video game productions, and the use of his characters in endorsements.

In 1983, he founded the Bird Studio, a manga and design production studio. Its name refers to him “tori” which means “bird”.

Under the company, he released several mangas, including Sand Land, KochiKame, and Cowa!, as well as video games, notably the Dragon Quest game series.

Net Worth$50 million
Primary Income SourceManga series creation
Supplementary Income SourceRoyalty, Production Company, Endorsement
AssetsHome studio in Kiyosu

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Where Did He Live?

Toriyama preferred to live in his home studio in Kiyosu. Pictures of his lavish home studio began to circulate on social media, and many speculated that it could be worth multi-million dollars.

Moreover, there were reports that he also had some as an avid lover of sports cars. However, no detail of his luxurious four-wheelers ever came.

Was Akira Toriyama Active On Social Media?

No, Toriyama was not fond of social media platforms. Even more, he didn’t use smartphones or flip phones. Instead, he used email to communicate with colleagues or for business purposes.

He was reclusive and made very rare appearances in interviews. In December 1980, Akira began using a cyborg avatar, “Robotoriyama,” to represent him in mangas or interviews; fans referred to his avatar as ‘Tori-bot.’

An Avid Animal Lover But Afraid Of One

Akira, who had a hobby of assembling scale models, was an avid animal lover- fish, cats, dogs, birds, and turtles. However, he feared mice to the point that he would skip work if there were a mouse infestation.

Not only did his pets give him company, but he was also an inspiration to his manga characters. For instance, Toriyama owned a Cornish Rex, which inspired him to the character of Beerus, a god of destruction, in Dragon Ball.

Comparison of Toriyama's Dragon Ball character Beerus with a Cornish Rex
Comparison of Toriyama’s Dragon Ball character Beerus with a Cornish Rex (Source: Twitter)

As reported, when his manga Dr. Slump (1978-84) peaked, Toriyama had two dogs, Turbo and Turbo II, a cat named Ohiru, and many birds. Many relate his name “Tori” (meaning “birds”) to his affection to have Ariel friends.

Then, at the time Dragon Ball became, he owned a Siberian husky named Matryoshka and a black cat named Koge.


Akira Toriyama’s journey to manga was full of ups and downs. He was not sure if he could survive and thrive in the industry. Thanks to his dedication and his wife’s support, the bliss of success became a reality.

Inspired by Osamu Tezuka’s Astro Boy and Disney’s One Hundred and One Dalmatians, he studied design at Prefectural Industrial High School. He left college against his parents’ will to gather experience and work at an advertising agency in Nagoya.

He would quit his job to become a manga creator himself but struggled with many rejections. At 23, he made a firm stand in the manga industry in Japan with the shonen manga Dr. Slump, later adapted into anime.

Then, in 1984, he released a masterpiece, Dragon Ball, which came as an evolution and combination of Dragon Boy and The Adventure of Tongpoo. And the rest is history!

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