Japan: Missing 7-year-Old Boy Found TrendyVoice

3 June 2016

Japan: Missing 7-year-Old Boy Found

A missing 7-year-old boy was found unharmed after
searchers spent nearly a week combing dense forest
on the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido, officials
said Friday.

He was discovered in a hut at a military exercise
ground about 4 miles (6 kilometers) from the spot
where he was left alone at the roadside for a short
time by his parents for being naughty.
Takayuki Tanooka, the father of the boy, said he was
"very sorry" for what happened to his son and
regretted the punishment.
"I told my son that I am sorry that I made him go
through a very hard situation. He nodded to me,"
Tanooka said at a press conference after being
reunited with his son.
"I have been raising him with lots of love," he said,
his head bowed and on the verge of tears. "I would
like to pour a lot more love over him from now on,
and watch him growing up."
"I never thought the situation would develop in such
a way. I thought it would be good for him, but it was
too much," he added.

Hungry but uninjured
Three soldiers from Japan's Self-Defense Forces
found Yamato Tanooka on the premises of the
military's Komagatake exercise field Friday morning,
said Hiroki Komori, a spokesman for the Northern
Army 11th Brigade.
The boy told them he was hungry. The soldiers gave
him water and two rice balls, and said that the boy
was fine and talking normally.
The boy told police he reached the building the first
night he was missing, local media said.

He appeared to be in good condition for someone
who had spent seven days without food, Dr.
Yoshiyuki Sakai, the doctor who examined Yamato,
said at the press conference.
He spoke coherently and showed signs of mild
dehydration and malnutrition; he had a light
scratches on his arms and legs, the doctor said.
The small building where Yamato was found is
usually used as a rest station, but hadn't been used
recently, CNN Affiliate Asahi TV reported. Yamato had
wrapped himself up in two of the futon mattresses
that were stored inside to keep warm.
He drank water from a tap outside.
Odd circumstances
News of Yamato's disappearance spread beyond the
island nation due to its odd circumstances.
The boy's father told authorities on May 28 that his
son disappeared while picking wild vegetables with
his family.
Tanooka later admitted they left him on the side of a
mountain road in the woods of Nanae, home to wild
bears. It was punishment for throwing stones at
passing cars and people.
When his parents returned for him, the boy was gone.

Tanooka suggested the family hesitated to report
him missing because of the punishment.
"I thought it might be taken as a domestic violence,"
he told TV Asahi.
The lie may have put search and rescue efforts at a
strategic disadvantage, said the Fire Department's
"This is a very rare case, specifically with the story
changing in the middle," Saito said earlier this week.
"We cannot speak retrospectively, but we would have
seen a different development if we had known the
story from the beginning."
Parenting debate
The case has sparked debate in Japan about
parenting styles. Many have been highly critical of
the parents, accusing them of neglect.
But some have been more understanding.
"Disciplining children through gentle talking is ideal,
but it is difficult sometimes on busy daily life," said
Kiyosihi "Big Daddy" Hayashishita, a TV celebrity
with 13 children.

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