One Year and Six Months. A trip to Tohoku

It’s been one year and six months since the tragic earthquake and tsunami that devastated regions of the Tohoku area, and six months since our “One Year After benefit concert took place in Fremont, California. We had the opportunity to connect with many dedicated people helping the displaced children through the Living Dreams organization. And now, next month I will have an opportunity to travel to the area to actually meet some of them in person.

It’s one thing to rally our community together to raise monies for the victims of a disaster. It is another thing completely to come face to face with their reality, as they struggle day to day to bring normalcy back into their lives. The people of Japan are resilient and hardworking and have made tremendous strides in rebuilding their lives and their cities. But the toll has been taken, as thousands of acres of farmland have been contaminated, lives lost, homes swept away, and families displaced. It will take years before the area once again thrives.

I am not sure what to expect as I make plans for my short trip to the area. I hope to bring a message of good will and support from the many in our community who worked hard to stage our fundraiser. And I hope to meet the people who through sheer perseverance have rebuilt their lives and their homes, keeping the light of hope shining for all to see.

We have a lot to learn from these people.

I will be updating my experiences along the way.

Steve Yamaguma

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