Sanriku Tetsudou is a set of railway lines that were affected by the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami 5 years ago. It became one of the icons for the post-disaster recovery, and it was one of the features of a morning TV drama "Amachan".

A staff at Kuji station placed a message board at the station is being talked about on SNS in Japan.

"Thank you" and "congratulations"

This heartfelt message is addressed to high school students who are graduating this spring:


Congratulations for successfully graduating from high school: Tsunami, 5 years, and departure
I don't want to see that horrendous image of the ocean swelling up, washing away our vehicles.
I'd rather see that beautiful blue sea that I saw with my family when I was young.
Even when people tell us to move forward, starting from a trench is just too tough.
I'm worried about what you all carry inside your heart, when that sort of thoughts remain in your minds.
I wish that "good" will come to you for all that you have lost.
Don't get caught by the overwhelming thing called the world; please help these child.
I hope that your daily commute using this iconic train will lead to opportunities of some kind.
From bottom of my heart: I love you all so deeply.
And thank you for using "Santetsu".

I sincerely thank you all.

Congratulations again for your graduation. Godspeed.

Kuji Station, Sanriku Tetsudou

Quoted from 三陸鉄道ブログ [鉄ログ] (Sanriku Tetsudou Blog "Tetsu-log"), liberally translated

The message is so deep, and so thoughtful of the high school students who commuted week in and week out using the train.

We asked Komaki, deputy station manager of Kuji station to find out what prompted him to write this beautiful message.

―― What was your motivation behind this message?

Due to the earthquake in 2011, so many tragedies occurred in our region: your homes and your beloved washed away. That shock and sadness are still beyond words.

People here were felt empty, yet they still used this train. That's why I wanted to tell them how thankful we are. I also wanted to truly congratulate all the new graduates who will make the next step in their lives.

―― Do you write this message every year?

This is the fourth year since I've written such a message.

The first time I've set up a message board in the station was in 2013, when students who were in their first year of high school when the disaster struck graduated.

Since then, Kuji station has been writing messages every year.

This message board will be in the station facility from the day of graduation until March 11, the anniversary of the earthquake.


Many people on Twitter was moved by this message. Here are some tweets:

It really moved me, and almost brought me to tears. It seems to reflect the feelings and fears of those youths. Some might say "you shouldn't intervene in students' lives", yet people who care saves us; and this message makes me want to be someone who cares.

This message to high school graduates is really moving me!

Good luck to you all graduates!
Good luck Santetsu!

Oh dear, I might be in tears!

While wounds from the horrendous disaster may never heal, such a love-filled message would surely be a strength to the graduates.

Congratulations! And may there be a lot of happiness awaiting you.

By - grape Japan editorial staff.