Remains of Woman Missing in 2011 Disaster Returned to Family

Society Lifestyle

Ishinomaki, Miyagi Pref., March 10 (Jiji Press)--The remains of a woman who went missing in the major earthquake and tsunami that hit the Tohoku northeastern Japan region on March 11, 2011, were passed on to her family by police on Wednesday.

The whereabouts of the woman, Natsuko Okuyama, from Higashimatsushima, Miyagi Prefecture, had been unknown since she left her workplace for home at the time of the disaster. She was then 61 years old.

Last month, her almost intact body was found near the coast of the city along with a long sleeve shirt and an apron, prefectural police said. Later, DNA analysis and dental records identified the body as Okuyama, the police said.

"I've had many times when I wanted to get advice from and rely on her," said Eiki, Okuyama's eldest son, who received her remains.

Her return home offered "a message that I can live all by myself from now on," he said. "I want to live my life fully and positively."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press