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Ishinomaki, a rice-shipping port in Miyagi prefecture founded in the fourth century, is known for its huge fish market, a museum devoted to "manga" comic books and a replica of the Statue of Liberty looming over a small island in the Kitakami River.
Reading up more about Ishinomaki makes me a little sad about what had happened here in this town. The team split up for several missions. We had met up with the Canadian CMET and American IMET team who has an impressive setup... A portable hospital with medical equipment, generator and heater. It was a very crazy tent.
I feel very sad when I see a car with a smashed window and keys in the ignition.
One team went to a shelter to play music to lift the spirits of the Survivors.
Another team met with city hall to get permission to distribute free fuel to the public for heating homes in the cold weather, and they had a press conference. For me, I took my camera and decided to walk with Jim on a photo journey to check out the damaged areas. For most of Ishinomaki that was untouched, it was beautiful. But for others, it was heart breaking.
The pier was destroyed.
People were missing.
Cars in pool.
I noticed that much of the roads that was blocked previously was cleared, buildings that were smashed boarded up and destroyed cars removed one by one. The store owners are cleaning their shops and volunteers are hard at work helping to clear debris. Though the mood is serious, there are still occasional laughters, and everyone seems to be having a good time. We will help give out free fuel tomorrow and help at a shelter.