Tag Archives: Fr. Henri Rispal

Kamaishi

Posted by William Grimm

Kamaishi is no stranger to tsunami.

A major one in 1896 destroyed the city and washed away a 29-year-old French priest who was visiting parishioners there.

A portrait in the Kamaishi Church of Fr. Henri Rispal, killed by a tsunami in June 1896.

To protect itself from tsunami, the city built the world’s deepest breakwater, completed in March 2009. In March 2011, it showed, just as the Titanic once did, that when humans decide they can match the power of the sea, they are doomed to failure.

The Asia Symphony, 175,000-ton cargo ship that was lifted above the Kamaishi breakwater and dropped on top of it by the tsunami

Suddenly night crushed out the day and hurled
Her remnants over cloud-peaks, thunder-walled.
Then fell a stillness such as harks appalled
When far-gone dead return upon the world.

— Wilfred Owen, The Unreturning

Across the street from the breakwater. Red flags mark places where human bodies have been found

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