At 1315 on February 15th 2019 nine members of the Portland Branch with two members of the Weymouth Branch of the Royal Naval Association and two members of the Merchant Navy Association joined with members of the public to pay their respects to Petty Officer Asayoshi Harada of the Imperial Japanese Navy who was interned, with full military honours, in the Naval Cemetery on Portland exactly 100 years ago.
It was initiated by Jed Grant who with his father has regularly visited the Cemetery. He knew of the headstone and wished to inform any surviving members of Asayoshi’s family that his last resting place was still being well tended. After much research he discovered that PO Harada had fallen overboard from his ship while it was in Portland port; his body being recovered from the sea several months later. To discover more information Jed contacted the Japanese Embassy who assisted to trace Asayoshi’s descendants.
After fitting tributes were spoken by Jed Grant and Commander Holroyd RN the gathering lowered their heads in silent tribute whilst a personal wreath was laid by Jed Grant, followed by wreaths on behalf of the Japanese Nation by Captain Toshihide Noma Japan Maritime Self Defence Force and on behalf of the Royal Navy by Commander Jon Holroyd RN.
Portland Branch RNA