Friday 24 February 2017

Boy lost in bear-infested woods was 'crying so hard' he walked the wrong way

Seven-year-old Yamato Tanooka, who was found by authorities in the woods nearly a week after his parents abandoned him for disciplinary reasons, waves as he leaves a hospital in Hakodate on the northernmost Japanese main island of Hokkaido, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo on June 7, 2016
Seven-year-old Yamato Tanooka, who was found by authorities in the woods nearly a week after his parents abandoned him for disciplinary reasons, waves as he leaves a hospital in Hakodate on the northernmost Japanese main island of Hokkaido, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo on June 7, 2016
Seven-year-old Yamato Tanooka, who was found by authorities in the woods nearly a week after his parents abandoned him for disciplinary reasons, waves as he leaves a hospital in Hakodate on the northernmost Japanese main island of Hokkaido, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo on June 7, 2016
Yamato Tanooka (7) was discovered sleeping on a mattress by military personnel. Photo: Getty
Seven-year-old Yamato Tanooka, who was found by authorities in the woods nearly a week after his parents abandoned him for disciplinary reasons, waves as he leaves a hospital in Hakodate on the northernmost Japanese main island of Hokkaido, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo on June 7, 2016
Ground Self-Defence Force members search for Yamato in the forest (Kyodo News/ AP)
Seven-year-old Yamato Tanooka, who was found by authorities in the woods nearly a week after his parents abandoned him for disciplinary reasons, waves as he leaves a hospital in Hakodate on the northernmost Japanese main island of Hokkaido, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo on June 7, 2016

The seven-year-old Japanese boy abandoned in a forest by his parents for being naughty meant to follow his parents' car but was crying so hard he went the wrong way, a newspaper said today.

Feeling that the woods were "scary", Yamato Tanooka kept walking along the road even after the sun set, eventually arriving at a military base where he found an unlocked building and slipped in.

The massive search for Yamato Tanooka, after his parents left him by the side of a road in northern Japan as discipline for throwing stones at cars, kept Japan riveted for nearly a week until his discovery on a Japanese military base.

It prompted a flood of social media comment, much of it critical of the parents, but police said on Monday that they would not file charges.

Ground Self-Defence Force members search for Yamato in the forest (Kyodo News/ AP)
Ground Self-Defence Force members search for Yamato in the forest (Kyodo News/ AP)

The Mainichi Shimbun newspaper reported that he was sobbing so hard he took the wrong direction.

"I walked for about five hours, I think," Yamato was quoted as saying. After finding the building, "I was cold so I went inside to sleep."

Seven-year-old Yamato Tanooka (C), who was found by authorities in the woods nearly a week after his parents abandoned him for disciplinary reasons, waves as he leaves a hospital with his father Takayuki (R) in Hakodate on the northernmost Japanese main island of Hokkaido, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo on June 7, 2016
Seven-year-old Yamato Tanooka (C), who was found by authorities in the woods nearly a week after his parents abandoned him for disciplinary reasons, waves as he leaves a hospital with his father Takayuki (R) in Hakodate on the northernmost Japanese main island of Hokkaido, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo on June 7, 2016

Wearing a baseball cap and holding a paper baseball, Yamato waved at journalists and well wishers gathered in front of the hospital on Tuesday, occasionally flashing a gap-toothed smile.

Read More: Boy (7) left in bear-infested forest as punishment found after six-day ordeal

Yamato Tanooka, center, who was found after being abandoned by his parents as punishment in a forest, is escorted by his father Takayuki, right, as he leaves a hospital in Hakodate on the northern island of Hokkaido Tuesday, June 7, 2016
Yamato Tanooka, center, who was found after being abandoned by his parents as punishment in a forest, is escorted by his father Takayuki, right, as he leaves a hospital in Hakodate on the northern island of Hokkaido Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Asked how he was feeling, the boy said: "I'm all right." He added that he was looking forward to getting back to school as his father took his hand and led him to a car.

Yamato's parents first said he disappeared while they foraged for edible plants, but later told police they had left him by the road to discipline him after he threw stones at people and cars.

They said when they drove back a few minutes later the boy had disappeared.

Yamato said he stayed in the unlocked building for the next six days with no food, although he drank water from an outdoor tap. Although he heard search helicopters flying overhead, he decided to stay where he was and await discovery, media said.

Reuters

Read More

Promoted articles

Editors Choice

Also in World News