3/11 in Six Words

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Ten years ago, at 2:46 pm on March 11, disaster struck. Buildings swayed and hearts sank as a magnitude 9.1 earthquake hit from the shores of the Tohoku region. An hour later, 30-foot waves assailed Japan’s coasts, plowing into the lives of community after community. Three reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station underwent a Level 7 meltdown, the highest degree of severity on the International Nuclear Event Scale. In the coming days, 15,899 loved ones will pass away, and some 320,000 would evacuate the Tohoku area.

Initially a six-minute ordeal, the aftershocks of 3/11 continue to resonate today: 2,529 lives remain unaccounted for and 47,773 evacuees remain dispersed across the nation.

Once lively towns still struggle to regain their footing, as those forced by the evacuation order to build roots elsewhere often do not return. Hundreds of thousands of lives are inexorably altered, yet continue to advance forward courageously. 

In commemoration of the tenth anniversary of the triple disaster, Hanabi asked members of the ASIJ community to capture what 3/11 means to them in a six-word phrase. From snapshots in time, lessons learned, and well wishes for those most impacted, we hope these phrases offer an opportunity to reflect on the importance of continuing to work on disaster relief and prevention. 

Please consider donating to Tohoku Disaster Relief Organizations organizations, as well as participating in school wide efforts like the English Circle, COSA, and Tomodachi. To ensure we are each prepared in the event of an emergency, make sure you are up to date on disaster preparedness as well (Document courtesy of the English Circle).