• Kyodo

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Uwajima Fisheries High School, operator of the training ship Ehime Maru, which sank off Oahu Island after a collision with a U.S. Navy submarine, began the new school year Monday with the names of its four missing students still on the roster.

Hawaiian-born retired yokozuna Akebono meets a student of Uwajima Fisheries High School in Ehime Prefecture.

The school shied away from leaving the four 17-year-olds, who were aboard the ship when it sank, off the list because technically they remain missing following the Feb. 9 collision with the USS Greeneville.

In the collision, two of the school’s teachers and three crew members also were lost at sea. There were 35 people aboard the ship, including 13 students, two teachers and 20 crew members, who were on a training voyage that began in early January.

The missing four are among 83 students, including nine students rescued from the accident, in the third year of studies at the school.

The four, who are presumed dead but considered missing as their bodies have not been recovered, are Yusuke Terata, Katsuya Nomoto, Takeshi Mizuguchi and Toshiya Sakashima. The teachers are Hiroshi Makizawa and Jun Nakata.

On Sunday, survivors and relatives of the nine missing agreed not to seek a complete salvage of the ship.

The 26 survivors and the families of those lost agreed instead to ask the United States to raise the ship from where it lies, at 600 meters below the surface of the sea, to a depth at which divers can search inside.

The navy plans to raise the Ehime Maru between June and August, after completing a 10-week environmental impact assessment, a U.S. Navy source said last week.

It is feared the ship could leak fuel during a salvage operation and the request by the survivors and families reflects this concern, according to Uwajima Mayor Hirohisa Ishibashi, who took part in Sunday’s meeting.

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