This year marks the 75th anniversary of the tragic bombing of Hiroshima. However, due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the annual Hiroshima Commemoration and Peace service scheduled for Aug. 6 at Izumo Taishakyo Mission of Hawaii has been cancelled.
On Aug. 6, 1945, approximately 140,000 people were killed when the United States dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima. An estimated 70,000 more were killed three days later in the bombing of Nagasaki.
A press release from the event’s organizers urges the public to “Please join us in offering your fondest prayers to those who lost their lives and for those whose lives have been affected [by] the unfortunate bombing of Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945.
“It is our hope that conditions improve over the next several months so we can have our ‘Peace Service’ next year in 2021.”
Last year’s ceremony held at Izumo Taishakyo included guests from Honolulu and Hiroshima. They offered speeches, performances and blessings in remembrance of the tragic event. Among those in attendance were Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell, Consul General of Japan Koichi Ito and Honolulu Hiroshima Kenjin Kai president Wayne Miyao.
The HCPS event started in 1990; this is the first time the service has been cancelled in 30 years. Organizers include Wayne Miyao, chairman of the Hiroshima Hawaii Sister State Committee and president of the Honolulu Hiroshima Kenjin Kai; Michael Broderick, president of the YMCA of Honolulu; and Rev. Jun Miyasaka and Ray Tsuchiyama, both representing Izumo Taishakyo Mission of Hawaii.