10 Years On: Despite Tsunami Disaster, Man Still Cares for Hometown Sea


Ishinomaki, Miyagi Pref., March 11 (Jiji Press)--Except for the call of seagulls, an eerie silence was settling on his tsunami-engulfed hometown on Japan's northeastern Pacific coast.

No human voices. No noise of doors being opened or closed. No sounds from kitchen in homes.

Tsutomu Yamazaki was dazed at the sight of the Ogatsu district of Ishinomaki, a port city in Miyagi Prefecture, when he arrived back from the prefectural capital of Sendai four days after the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami.

A decade later, the district's landscape is totally different, reflecting infrastructure improvements. Elevated land is sparsely dotted with houses, while a 9.7-meter-high sea embankment stands at the innermost section of Ogatsu Bay.

Yamazaki lost his elder brother Hiroshi, then 74, and elder sister Ritsuko, then 87, to the tsunami. His sister Seiko, 13 years older than him, remains missing.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press