Tsunami victims still suffering

EMMA DANGERFIELD
Last updated 10:00 06/12/2012
Norio Sasaki
Emma Dangerfield

Lifesaving effort: Norio Sasaki is walking New Zealand with his trailer to say a big thank you to the people of New Zealand for their help after the Japanese earthquake and tsunami.

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He has tackled the Homer Tunnel and the Hundalees with nothing but his trailer for company, but there are no challenges tougher than his lifesaving duties in Japan after the devastating earthquake and tsunami.

Nori Sasaki is walking the length of New Zealand to raise awareness for those still struggling in Japan, as well as meeting kindred spirits in Christchurch.

Nori is a trained lifesaver, and former member of the Japanese self-defence force, so immediately after the quake struck in Japan, he was making his way north to assist in the recovery of bodies. Though his training and experience helped enormously, Nori witnessed some terrible sights over the next few weeks, and part of his walk is now to remind people of the devastation which many are still living with.

Nori plans to cover much of the globe on his travels, although it will be done in stages as he has the funds. He chose New Zealand and Australia because he can understand a little English and he also felt a connection with New Zealand because of the earthquakes and he wanted to see Christchurch for himself.

Walking up to 50km each day, Nori says the pace of his travels means he gets to meet people and share his experiences. Despite his lack of spoken English, he has been finding the Kiwi hospitality very welcoming and for that he is grateful.

After New Zealand and Australia, Nori hopes to walk through Taiwan to show his gratitude for their generosity.

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- Kaikoura Star

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