Archive for Thursday, January 19, 1995


January 19, 1995


Several sources are available in Lawrence to discover the fate of specific people in Japan.

As the number of dead and injured continues to rise after Tuesday's earthquake in Japan, students and others still wait to discover the fate of loved ones.

"It's terrible -- I'm trying to find out about my grandmother," said Noriko Ishizaka, a Kansas University exchange student.

She was one of several Japanese students in KU's Ermal Garinger Academic Resource Center in Wescoe Hall watching a tape-delayed television news broadcast from their home country.

The language lab offers live and taped international newscasts on several television screens.

Wednesday's entire hour-long newscast by Fujisankei News, headquartered in Tokyo, was about the earthquake. The broadcast, shown at 11 a.m. at KU, airs live six hours earlier in Japan, students said.

The network showed dramatic footage of property devastation, weeping injured and sites where others were still trapped under debris. The students clutched their hands to their faces and uttered sighs and groans of disbelief as they watched.

As communication with the affected areas slowly has been restored, some students have managed to find out about their families.

"I couldn't call them (Tuesday), but then they called me at night," said Shunsuke Sugai, a freshman from Osaka. "My family is fine."

Jo Byers, manager for the Douglas County Red Cross office, said Japanese students or residents who want to get in touch with immediate relatives may call the office at 843-3550.

People with inquires should have as much information as possible, including the name, sex, occupation, zip code, telephone number, date of birth and last known contact with the person they wish to know about, Byers said. The local office will forward the information to the Japanese Red Cross, she said.

People wanting information about nonmilitary American nationals may call the U.S. State Department at (202) 647-0900.

"The U.S. embassy in Japan is collecting data about American nationals and will answer inquiries as soon as possible," Byers said.

Byers said Wednesday that the local office had received six inquiries so far, all for Americans in Japan.

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