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Ongoing concern about family and friends

Heartache and worry are in full force after the quake and tsunami. ATVN's Marie Agnello reports from Kyoto

Residents are still worried about the safety of friends and family, as Japan continues to deal with the aftermath of last week’s earthquakes that have ravaged the nation, ATVN’s Marie Agnello reports from Kyoto.

Shizuka Takahashi works at Hana Hostel in Kyoto. She said a friend and colleague at the hostel had family members in Sendai, the city closest to where Friday’s 9.0 megaquake and tsunami hit.

That friend, according to Takahasi, traveled north to help her family in the aftermath of the quake and tsunami, but Takahasi said now that friend may have become stranded herself.

“She was going to buy all the food and gasoline — whatever — they need,” Takahashi told ATVN. “But she couldn’t get [anything there] at all.”

Transportation, too, is still an issue for many Japanese, according to Takahashi.

“All the lines are cut from Tokyo to Sendai,” said Takahashi.

Takahasi said her friend had taken the inland JR East rapid trains, as the local trains and coastal JR trains are still out of operation.

Then, Takahasi said, the friend stopped in a prefecture between Tokyo and Sendai to pick up food and gasoline but was unsuccessful due to the shortages there.

Shizuka said she had been in communication with her friend by phone, but she has since lost touch with her. They’ve not spoken in about a day, according to Agnello.

Shizuka said she is very worried about the whereabouts and well being of her friend.

Agnello will be in rural Japan tomorrow before moving into Tokyo later this week.

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