Warren Thomas Fisher Adams passed away Saturday, January 21, 2012, surrounded by family and friends in Ramona, CA, at age 87, after a short bout with pneumonia.
He was born November 25, 1924 in the Canadian town of Kerrobert, Saskatchewan to William and Mary (Connor) Adams. When asked about his birth, he said, "I was born at a very young age, and I didn't know very much when I was born, but I didn't know that I didn't know very much, so I did not suffer from any low self-esteem. I couldn't help where I was born. All I knew is that I wanted to be near my mother at the time." This quote from Warren shows his never-ending humor. He had a way with words.
In the early years of his life he traveled with his family as his father studied at Wheaton College, Moody Bible Institute, Prairie Bible Institute and graduated from Northern Baptist Theological Seminary (Chicago) with a B.Th. At the age of 9, his mother became ill and he was sent to his Uncle John's farm home in Major, Saskatchewan, where he spent three wonderful years. Sometime after this, the family moved to the Burnaby/New Westminster area of British Columbia, where he attended Edmonds Street School.
During school years, he loved all sports and was very active at Sapperton Baptist Church. While at this church, he heard a missionary from China speak, and he was inspired to become a missionary to Japan. After high school, he spent time in the Canadian Air Force, where he trained as a pilot. The war ended before he completed his training. He then went to Prairie Bible Institute in Three Hills, Alberta, Canada, where he was senior class president. He was also very active in the music program at Prairie and Sapperton. While at Prairie, he answered God's call to the mission field, and left for Japan in about 1949. He then met and promptly fell in love with Adele Scott. They were married a year later, in 1950, and wasted no time in starting a family. Five children were born to them during their time in Japan: Mark, Gary (died in infancy), Armin, Alane and Joanne.
While in Japan, he taught at the language school, in Karuizawa. There, he wrote a manual for learning and teaching the Japanese language, which is still in use for that purpose today. He was widely known for his mastery of the Japanese language. He was also the principal of a Bible school in Tokyo. Most of his time was spent evangelizing in and around the small town of Toyama.
He and Adele left the mission field in 1959 and decided to settle in San Diego, CA, where his two brothers, Paul and Phil, and their families had settled. The sunshine was also a beckoning factor. But it was a difficult time. He had four children, no job training, and was in his mid-thirties. He got a construction job and was a member of the Laborers and Hod Carriers union. He did this for a couple years. During this time he became an American citizen. He then went to business college at night and eventually became a real estate appraiser in San Diego. He became a successful appraiser and remained in the field for many years. During this time, he taught adult and college age Sunday school classes at College Avenue Baptist Church. When he was forty years old, he began a life-long interest in long-distance running (his last marathon was at about 80 years of age).
In 1978 Warren and Adele felt led to go back to the mission field in Japan. They were there this time for only two years. After returning from Japan, he and Adele moved to Seattle and he continued to work as an appraiser. They then moved back to San Diego in 1984, and he eventually retired from Union Bank as vice president of the appraisal division in 1991. After retirement, his chief pursuit was to urge congregational and inter-church prayer for revival and spiritual awakening. He took this message to many churches in the San Diego area.
His daughter Joanne and her husband Ken Gamble provided a beautiful cottage next to their home in which Warren & Adele have lived for the last two years. It gave him great joy to look out on the rolling hills of back-country Ramona. In his last days, Joanne asked him what he wanted to say to his kids. He replied, "Follow the Lord and Keep your Bibles open."
Warren is survived by his beloved wife of 61 years, Adele, his four children, thirteen grandchildren, one great-granddaughter, two brothers (Paul & Bruce), sisters-in-law Miriam, Betty and Lila Adams and Doris Christmas, and many nieces and nephews and their families.