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April 25 – In Good Company

April 25 – In Good Company

Visits from friends and co-workers help lift Yasue’s spirits.

From Left, Ken Niimura, Duane Kurisu and Cano Caoli share with the hospital officials the more than $150,000 raised With Aloha.

It has now been 45 days since the devastating earthquake and tsunami ravaged Tohoku. It has been even longer, nearly 100 days, since Yasue arrived in Sendai to care for her ailing mother. That’s a long time for anyone to have to go through multiple tragedies. Although Yasue is an only child, she considers herself very fortunate for the help she has received from friends, co-workers and even complete strangers. This blog is full of numerous examples of the help she has received and the joy it has brought her. Just because you are an only child doesn’t mean you have to go it alone.

There are recent examples of this help as well. Her Tokyo friend Elena is once again in Sendai as an interpreter along with a Stars and Stripes reporter. This is the third such visit and it does Yasue well to have a friend to enjoy dinner with and to talk to. Last Friday, Duane Kurisu, the CEO and Chairman of my parent company, aio, visited with Yasue as he toured the Tohoku University Hospital. It’s humbling for both Yasue and I to know that the company I work for was able to raise more than $150,000 and get it directly to Sendai in the hands of the doctors and staff working to save lives. The With Aloha movement started by aio has just begun and we will continue to raise money for the quake and tsunami victims.

Yasue’s company, The JW Marriott Ihilani Resort and Spa, has supported her significantly as well. Her co-workers there have donated their vacation time to Yasue, allowing her to spend time with her mom. Also, Marriott provided silent auction items and volunteer workers for the With Aloha Fundraiser that raised the $150,000. Most importantly, they check in on us to see how we are doing.

We are in good company and are very thankful for that.


Posted on Sunday, April 24, 2011 in Permalink

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About This BLOG

Scott and Yasue Schumaker moved from Japan to Hawaii in 1995. They and their son Ian, 14, live in Kapolei. In mid-January, Yasue unexpectedly returned to her childhood home in Sendai, Japan to care for her ailing mother. She was in Sendai when the devastating 9.0 earthquake struck. In this blog, Scott will share how all 3 family members are coping with the separation amid the chaos and misery of post-quake life in northern Japan. All times in this blog are HST.

Editor's Note:
Scott Schumaker, president of our parent company, PacificBasin Communications, has a unique take on the events unfolding in Japan. His wife, Yasue, is a concierge at the JW Marriott Ihilani Resort and Spa. Yasue was in Sendai when the earthquake and tsunami hit and was one of the first people interviewed by CNN. She remains there, looking after her ailing mother and coping with the devastation. In this online column, Schumaker chronicles the experience of one family, both separated and united by disaster.

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