MATSUYAMA, Ehime Pref. – About 340 people offered silent prayers Tuesday for the nine people who died eight years ago when a U.S. submarine surfaced under a Japanese fisheries high school training ship off Hawaii.
At a memorial service at Uwajima Fisheries High School in Uwajima, Ehime Prefecture, students, family members and teachers rang a bell recovered from the sunken Ehime Maru nine times at 8:43 a.m. — 1:43 p.m. Hawaii time — the exact moment when the 499-ton ship was struck from below by the USS Greeneville.
“Tremendous anger and grief have not gone away even after eight years. It is our duty to learn the lessons from the accident,” said Shinzo Imaoka, principal of Uwajima Fisheries High School.
In Honolulu, 60 people, including relatives of three of the victims, held their own memorial ceremony Monday.
“I don’t want to bring back the memory of the accident, but I really appreciate so many people attending the ceremony every year,” said Tatsuyoshi Mizuguchi, who lost his 17-year-old son, Takeshi, in the accident.
Mizuguchi’s son is the only victim whose body was not recovered.