Ehime Maru Memorial Ceremony - February 9, 2021
EHIME MARU MEMORIAL CEREMONY - FEBRUARY 9, 2021
Wreaths and lei decorate the Ehime Maru Memorial for the 20th Memorial Ceremony.
On Tuesday, February 9, 2021, the Ehime Maru Memorial Association (EMMA) held a private remembrance ceremony for the 20th anniversary of the sinking of the Uwajima Fisheries High School training ship Ehime Maru at the Ehime Maru Memorial in Kakaʻako Waterfront Park. The Ehime Maru suffered the loss of nine lives, including four students, two teachers, and three crew members after it was unexpectedly struck by the USS Greeneville submarine. Messages of remembrance from Consul General Yutaka Aoki, Governor David Ige, Governor Tokihiro Nakamura of Ehime Prefecture, Mayor Rick Blangiardi, and Mayor Fumiaki Okahara of Uwajima City were read during the private ceremony. In memory of the nine who were lost in the tragedy, wreaths and lei were offered to the memorial on behalf of the bereaved family members and Ehime Prefecture and Uwajima City officials who were unable to travel to Honolulu due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In his message, as the representative of the bereaved families, Mr. Tatsuyoshi Mizuguchi expressed heartfelt gratitude to everyone in Hawaii who has treated them with care, compassion, respect, and with the aloha spirit over the past twenty years.
Current EMMA and JASH President Reyna Kaneko (left) and Past President of EMMA and JASH President Emeritus Earl Okawa (right) offer messages of remembrance and reaffirm their commitment to maintaining the memorial.
In closing, Mr. Ken Saiki, Director of the Ehime Maru Memorial Association ensured that the association would continue to keep the memory of the nine souls alive in our hearts, and to care for the memorial so it remains a beautiful, fitting tribute to their legacy. Since its unveiling in 2002, Mr. Saiki has coordinated volunteers from local Japanese American community groups for weekly maintenance and cleaning of the memorial. JASH serves as the administrator of the Ehime Maru Memorial Association and works to preserve the memory of the lives lost in this tragic accident and to maintain the memorial in perpetuity.