Mutsuo Ikuhara, a California physician and son of a renowned Los Angeles Dodgers baseball executive from Japan, said he "can never forget" his time as a volunteer in northeastern Japan after the earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011, recalling his experiences in a recent interview as the country marks 13 years since the disaster.

A native of Japan, Mutsuo, 61, grew up in the United States due to the career of his late father Akihiro "Ike" Ikuhara, a longtime employee of the Dodgers front office. But the doctor was quick to assist his homeland when the magnitude-9.0 quake and resultant tsunami devastated parts of Fukushima, Miyagi and Iwate prefectures.

He entered the affected region about a week after the unprecedented disaster, which left more than 15,000 people dead and triggered a catastrophic nuclear meltdown. During that difficult and chaotic time, Ikuhara spent about three months on the ground with a nongovernmental organization helping to assess the destruction.