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Kasagi: Gates of Hope

Torii Gates at Okuki Bay, Hachinohe

In 2013, two nearly identical beams of a sacred Shinto gate landed on the Oregon coast after having been tragically washed away in the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011. After traveling 5,000 miles across the Pacific, incredibly, these two crossbeams, known as kasagi, landed within 120 miles of each other less than one month apart. Virtually unidentifiable, they could have been abandoned, forgotten, and lost forever.

Instead, the quest to return the two battered pieces of wood has brought people together from across the globe as a message of support for the people of Japan. What unfolds is the story of what connects us as humans: life, loss, perseverance, and hope.