PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) - A local Japanese student at Brown University has learned her family is safe after Friday's destructive earthquake and tsunami.
Brown freshman Arisa Akashi said she found out about the devastation in Japan from her mother who called her early Friday morning.
"She said I want you to know a really big earthquake happened in Tokyo," she told Eyewitness News.
Akashi said her mother was frantic after the earthquake hit and was in touch with her daughter throughout the day.
"She said many people died, over 300 now but there will be more...missing over 1,000 mostly due to the tsunami and a lesser extent fire," Akashi said of one of the many text messages her mother sent Friday.
Her family is from Tokyo, just south of the earthquake's epicenter, and damage was much less in areas where her family still is.
However, she is relieved her family is safe, but still concerned for her fellow countrymen who remain in Japan.
"It was just so large scale...with a tsunami there's really no way to prepare for that," Akashi commented.
She said there is a Japanese community at Brown, but since the students are in midterms, no meetings are currently scheduled.
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