Born in Vancouver, British Columbia on July 8, 1931, Dr. Shigeru Sugiyama was the son of Yasutaro and Chiyo (Kageshita) Sugiyama. He received his early education at the MacDonald School in Vancouver, and from 1942 to 1946 he attended a camp school in Tashme, British Columbia. Following World War II, the Sugiyama family moved to Chatham, where Dr. Sugiyama enrolled at Chatham Collegiate Institute for high school.
Dr. Sugiyama married Petronella Marlana Blommers on the 9th of January, 1956 in Chatham.
Dr. Sugiyama began his studies in pre-medical courses at the University of Western Ontario in 1958. He started medical school at the same university two years later, graduating with a medical degree in 1964. He then completed an internship in Grace University Hospital in Detroit.
Dr. Sugiyama returned to Chatham to open a general practice in 1965. His first office was located at 385 Wellington Street. In 1979, he moved his practice to 42 Grand Avenue West. While practicing medicine, Dr. Sugiyama held a number of positions on various committees. He served on the Board of the Public General Hospital (PGH), and he was also a lifetime member of the PGH Society.
Dr. Sugiyama retired from his family practice in 1991. Dr. Sugiyama continued to assist in surgery at the Public General Hospital and covered the medical practices of vacationing physicians until 1997. After his retirement, Dr. Sugiyama travelled extensively, and enjoyed taking trips in his R.V.
Dr. Sugiyama passed away on February 19, 2007. He was buried at Maple Leaf Cemetery, in Chatham. He was survived by his wife Janet (Couture), and his two sons, Robert Arthur Sugiyama and Shigeru Michael Sugiyama.