|The Baxters with two recovered items from Japan's tsunami (Reuters)|
Survivor of the March 2011 events in Japan Misaki Murakami lost all of his possessions to the tsunami. Searching in the rubble for the last year, he hasn't been able to recover one of his own items. Needless to say it was a big surprise when Murakami got word that his prized soccer ball turned up 3,000 miles away on an Alaskan beach.
David Baxter, a radar technician from Kasilof, Alaska, found Murakami's ball while beach-combing in March this year. Baxter's wife, Yumi, reached Murakami with help from a Japanese reporter. Murakami was so thankful that the couple took "the time to even try to find him," David Baxter said.
The ball was a gift of encouragement in 2005. It was a present from a classmate when Murakami was transferring schools.
Incidentally, Baxter also found a volleyball with Japanese writing on it a couple of weeks later, and NHK reported Monday that its owner was also found - Shiori Sato, 19, from Iwate prefecture (state), which was hit by the tsunami.