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Heartwarming News

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  • Heartwarming News

    Thought you might enjoy this,
    Posted by Bernie Woollands on 10/26/2004, 8:55 pm

    I've just come off the phone after talking to Alan Coogan for over an hour. As you know Alan was staying with the Shintaro family in Mushigame as he normally does at this time of year. He was there when the first quake struck on Saturday and stayed with them until they were set for airlifting out. Al, talks of the total devastation of the place, and things he witnessed. In his words "Roads behaving like ribbons, telegraph poles spinning around and around, etc etc". He gave me a run down of some of the places that I know and what has become of them, but I am not going to divulge any of that because it is too damn depressing but.... I am going to share this. About midday Sunday when Al was walking through the village to see if there was anything else he could do he met Toshio Sakai entering the village on foot. Toshio had driven from Isawa, (approx 3-4hours) to the nearest point where the roads were still serviceable and then walked the rest of the way up the mountain, through several streams etc just to see what he could do to help. The irony of it all was that within a couple of hours of him arriving the mayor of the village announced that the village was going to be evacuated the following day. Toshio has the reputation of being the irascible one, but he turned up, got to work, and cheered everybody up, and then walked back down to his car to drive home. What is they say? You can take the man out of Mushigame, but you can't take Mushigame out of the man. What a guy!

    Sakai is number 1 breeder in Japan, my words, and yet humble enough to help others in need. He has a true samurai heart!!
  • #2


    In isolation this story this truly amazing.

    Additional info I understand to be correct makes it even more so.

    I think this story is something akin to a movie scene, a truly magical moment, to turn the corner and see Toshio Sakai walking the other way having gone through that, what can you say....

    Mark Gardner


    • #3

      sounds like the toshio I know. I have admired this guy for many reasons and it's really nice to see him get some credit. Adds real meaning to the word integrity!
      Dick Benbow


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