Daily Management Review

Japanese Boy Found Unharmed in a Remote Area After Being Abandoned for Being Naughty a Week Ago


Japanese Boy Found Unharmed in a Remote Area After Being Abandoned for Being Naughty a Week Ago
Nearly a week after his disappearance set off a massive search that kept Japan riveted, a Japanese boy abandoned in a dense forest by his parents for being naughty was found alive and unharmed on Friday.
After his parents left him by the side of a road, reportedly as discipline for throwing stones at cars, seven-year-old Yamato Tanooka was discovered in a building on a Japanese military base around 4 km (2.5 miles) from where he disappeared last Saturday.
"One of our soldiers was preparing for drills this morning and opened the door of a building on the base, and there he was. When he asked 'are you Yamato?' the boy said yes. Then he said he was hungry, so the soldier gave him some water, bread and riceballs," a member of Japan's Self-Defence Forces told NHK national television.
Yamato would be kept at a hospital overnight as a precaution and he was declared to be healthy except for low body temperature after he was taken to hospital for checks, a doctor told a news conference.
While apologizing for causing trouble, a tearful Takayuki Tanooka, the boy's father, thanked rescuers for their efforts.
"We've reflected on what we did and it was really excessive. We - well, we loved him before, but I hope to give him even more attention now," Tanooka said, his voice shaking.
Yamato's parents told police they had left him by the road to discipline him after he threw stones at people and cars after initially trying to impress upon the law enforcers that the boy had disappeared while they foraged for edible plants.
The boy had disappeared when they drove back a few minutes later, the parents said.  The residents of the region say they rarely go through it since the area is very remote.
The densely forested area had witnessed heavy rains and night temperatures fell as low as 7 degrees Celsius (45 Fahrenheit) in the area. However the boy, clad in only a t-shirt and a pair of jeans, somehow managed to survive for nearly a week in the densely forested area.
Yamato said that he had found the building that was unlocked after he had "walked through the mountains". He slept on mattresses spread on the floor and drank water from a nearby faucet.
Japan has been gripped by the search for Yamato. In addition to soldiers on motorbikes and police on horseback, the massive search and rescue operations for boy involved several hundred shouting rescuers beating through heavy bush at the peak of the operations.
While the news programs gave regular updates throughout the week, NHK sent a news flash when he was found.
The parents were lambasted for their carelessness in a flood of social media comment after the incident came to light with thousands of online comments on the issue. Most of the social network users however expressed relief after he was found.
"To be honest, I was certain of a sad result. As the parent of a 7-year-old myself, all I can say is that I am really, really happy," one wrote.