Toronto - Tomáš Baťa Junior, died today at the age of 93 in Canada. Tomáš Baťa Foundation's head Pavel Velev confirmed the information.
The heir of a global shoe empire, started by his father and uncle in the Moravian city of Zlín between the two world wars, was living lives in Toronto.
Tomáš Baťa Junior was born in Zlín and he was a descendant of Tomáš Baťa Senior and his half-brother Jan Antonín Baťa. Jan Antonín took over the Baťa shoe empire after the death of his brother Tomáš on 12 July 1932 in a plane crash near Zlín.
Baťa Junior won many honorary degrees and became a Companion of the Order of Canada, Canada's highest civilian award, and in 1991 a holder of the Order of T.G.Masaryk.
After the year 1948 Baťa Jr. managed hundreds of Baťa outlets in 90 countries all over the world. He had a son and three daughters. The company is headed by his son Thomas George Baťa.
Tomáš Baťa Jr. visited Zlín in June this year to open a new centre of the local university.
Fighting to clear family name
In 1947 J. A. B. was sentenced in absentia to 15 years in prison for failing to support the anti-Nazi resistance movement during the World War II. Tomáš Baťa Jr. actively fought to clear the name of his relative for the past decade.
In November 2007 the Prague City Court finally annulled the 1947 sentence and the state prosecutors came to believe Jan Antonín Baťa was innocent. Their verdict is final.