Monday, April 11, 2011

80 Elementary School Children Who Were Washed Away in the Tsunami

Everyday, more and more stories of terrible suffering and deaths have come to my knowledge about the earthquake and resulting tsunami of March 11, 2011.
I am writing about these things because I feel that the people of the world need to know about the real tragedy here.
It has now been reported in Japanese media about how 80 elementary school students - who had evacuated their school to a designated evacuation area - died when the tsunami suddenly came upon them and washed them away.

I won't go into the details of this. If you want to see the original article, go here. To translate it, go to Google Translation here. There is a video of the aftermath below.

Notice the smashed windows on the second floor of the school. 
Those were broken due to the waves of the tsunami.

I can't help but the cry about this. I cannot stop the images going over and over in my head of poor 5~6-year old little boys and girls (up to 12-year-olds) crying in stark fear and panic as the ocean engulfed them. They followed the directions of their teachers and stood out on open ground fearing the earthquake. Little did they know that the tsunami was coming. At that school, the waves of the tsunami, by the way, reached past the second floor of the school building. Those waves were over about 5.5 meters (about 17 feet) into the air. Three and four foot tall children did not have a chance against waves that high and a tide moving at more than 60 miles per hour.

There was no where for them to run and no where for them to hide.

Oh, how they must have suffered and cried for their parents. What a terrible horror this must have been.

I pray to God for these children and their parents. I'm sure that those wonderful boys and girls are in heaven. In a place where there is no pain and they can be happy. 

Aftermath at Ishinomaki Ookawa Public Elementary School

My friend's and I made a trip to Ishinomaki the other day to bring relief supplies to the handicapped and to the aged. You can see photos of the devastation here in Japan's True Ground Zero - Not Nuclear Power Plants. Ken Nishikawa and I will be making a documentary video of the trip and plan on finishing it this week. 

I will never forget that trip to Ishinomaki and still haven't be able to grasp and comprehend everything I saw and the extent of the destruction and misery and pain. I cannot put into words what we witnessed.

I probably never will.

We can't help these children anymore but we can help share the love as there are many many more in need whose lives have been destroyed and who lost loved ones.... 

You can also help to share the love by taking this time to hug your own child and telling them that you love them.


Original News Stories:

1 comment:

Roger J> Marshall said...

Mike, you put this so eloquently! I will be unravelling the layers of emotional impact for a long time. Thank you for your words and your thoughts.