Tag Archives: tsunami

20 Years ago in Kobe, Japan

17 Jan

Today is 2015 January 17th…the 20th anniversary of the huge 1995 January 17th earthquake in 神戸 (Kobe), Japan.

I’ve experienced many earthquakes since I came to Japan in 1990…but only two that were big enough to destroy a city:
the 1995 Jan 17th Kobe Earthquake, and
the 2011 Mar 11th Sendai Earthquake and Tsunami.

Memorial ceremony in Kobe for victims of the 1995 Jan 17th earthquake. (Photo © Getty Images)

I never want to experience such a massive natural disaster ever again!

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Three year anniversary of 3-11-11

11 Mar

Today is 2014 March 14th. It’s already been three years since the huge earthquake and tsunami tragedy that hit Sendai.

I wrote a post on that day (Click here to read it) about four hours after it happened. That earthquake did damage down here in Tokyo…but nothing like what the Tohoku area suffered.

I also wrote a post about a month after the earthquake (Click here to read it) about some of the things the earthquake survivors treasure.

Today, for the tragedy’s third anniversary, the Japan Times newspaper is showing some of the hardest hit areas and the survivors three years after (Click here to see it).

A mother and her daughter attend a candle-lighting event held Sunday to commemorate the third anniversary of the March 11 tsunami and earthquake in Natori, Miyagi Prefecture, one of the worst-hit areas. | (photo from: KYODO | caption: Japan Times)

10-year-old letter arrives from daughter lost to tsunami

5 Mar

The three-year anniversary of the tragic 2011 March 11th earthquake and tsunami is in six days.
One couple who lost their daughter on that day recently received a letter she had written to them in 2004.

SoraNews24

110315-N-2653B-144 ‘I wonder if you’ll have a grandchild when you get this letter?’   These are the words written by a woman 10 years ago, before she lost her life in the March 2011 tsunami. Her mother and father were shocked to find the letter containing them arrive in the mail this January. While there was no Hollywood movie ending where their beloved daughter turned up alive and well, the letter has at least given them a chance to hear some of the things she never had the chance to tell them in life.

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Second anniversary

11 Mar

Today (2013 March 11) is the second anniversary of the biggest earthquake in Japan’s history and also one of the world’s top ten biggest.

The “2011 Tohoku-Region Pacific Earthquake” occurred at about 2:45PM on 2011 March 11th…two years ago today.

quake

The terrible tsunami that did more damage than the earthquake that caused it.

It shook buildings, including my house, even done here in Tokyo very strongly! It was an experience that I hope never happens again.
On the day of the earthquake, I wrote a post…click here to read it.

At 2:46PM today, all over Japan people will have a minute of silence to remember those who suffered and those who died in that tragedy.
In Tokyo, the Emperor and Empress of Japan will attend a ceremony to remember the victims.

Kit-Kat helped Tohoku

14 May

In Japan, Kit-Kat offers many unique only-in-Japan flavors.

( I wrote a post about some of the Kit-Kat Japan flavors.)

But one of their recent products was for a special cause…the “Kit-Kat World Variety” went on sale in Japan last March and ¥20 from each package sold went toward the rebuilding of the Sanriku train line (in Tohoku, Japan) which was destroyed in the 2011 March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

"Kit-Kat World Variety"

“Kit-Kat World Variety”

What makes Kit-Kat “World Variety” unique is that the package contains thirteen Kit-Kat chocolates…three are from Japan, five are from Australia and the other five are from England…this is because chocolate is made slightly differently in every country around the world and therefore tastes differently.

In addition to donating to the reconstruction of the train line, Kit-Kat also asked people from around the world to visit their Facebook page and leave messages of hope to the people of Tohoku  who were affected by the disaster…and many of those messages were displayed on the body of the new trains for the Sanriku line.

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Another new only-in-Japan “junkfood” product will be by Pepsi Japan soon.

Last December, Pepsi Japan offered “Pepsi Pink“.  And, next month, they will begin selling “Pepsi Black“.

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This drink will contain 50% less sugar and will have a “lemon flavor”.

One year later…

11 Mar

Today is 2012 March 11.  One year since the Great Sendai Earthquake.

Of course, ceremonies to commemorate the tragedy and remember the victims will be held around Japan today.

I found a video on YouTube made in November 2011, eight months after the earthquake and tsunami.
It shows scenes during the tragedy that give you an idea of how frightening it must have been.
And the video also mentions Taylor Anderson, who was an American English teacher at an elementary school in the Miyagi area. She helped save a number of school children from the tsunami but she herself, unfortunately, died in the disaster.
Some of her former students can be seen talking about her.

The video also mentions the aid workers who came to Japan from around the world and it shows how grateful the people in the Tohoku area are to them.

It’s a very emotional and touching video. I recommend watching it.
Watch it and tell me your reaction / feeling in the comment section of this post.

Here’s the video:

昨日は・・・

12 Feb

Yesterday, February 11th, was the anniversary of a few things…not all of them good.

For one, February 11th is a holiday in Japan. 「建国記念日」 (“National Founding Day”). (Click here for my short FAQ about it.)

It was kind of a waste that February 11 was on a Saturday this year because most people already had the day off and the holiday wasn’t observed on another day. If it was a Sunday, then tomorrow (Monday) would have been a day off.
Oh well.

February 11th also happens to be my father-in-law’s birthday.

Those two are the “happy” anniversaries of February 11th. The following two are more somber ones:

Yesterday, February 11 (2012), was the eleven-month anniversary of the 2011 March 11 earthquake / tsunami in north-eastern Japan.

The other sad event happened exactly twenty-four years ago yesterday. On 1988 February 11. At my high school in Florida.
It was many years until I was finally able to talk about this. Maybe it was post-traumatic shock.
But at lunch time on 1988 February 11, I was a senior-year high school student (in the final year of high school) and when I went into the lunch room I witnessed two students in a struggle with some teachers and then suddenly one of the boys drew a gun and shot the assistant principal Richard Allen fatally in the head!
All of the students in the lunch room began screaming and running but I suppose I was in shock because I just stood there staring. Everyone seemed to be running past me in slow-motion.
The memory no longer wakes me in nightmare but I will never forget that day.

A memorial photo of Richard Allen at my former high school in Florida (Pinellas Park HS).

If you click here, you can read a newspaper article about the tragic shooting at my former high school that was written four years ago on the twentieth anniversary.

Richard Allen, R.I.P.