Soldiers on parade at Camp Makomanai, Hokkaido

Soldiers on parade at Camp Makomanai, Hokkaido (Source:

Multiple outlets are reporting today that a member of the 18th Infantry Regiment (based at Camp Makomanai Base in Sapporo, Hokkaido) on deployment in Iwate Prefecture passed away in the early morning of May 27th. The 27-year old sergeant, deployed to Iwate on May 18th, and was supplying food to evacuees in Miyako. The soldier collapsed during a break at a community center in the north of Takizawamura at around 23:40 on May 26th and was taken to a hospital for emergency care – he passed away at 00:20 on May 27th. The cause of death is being investigated, but it appeared to be a heart attack.

The GSDF commented that no-one had reported anything abnormal about the soldier’s physical condition while he was on duty.

The 18th Infantry Regiment (Light Mechanized) is part of the GSDF’s 11th Brigade in the Northern Army. In other news, 260 troops have been dispatched from the Northern Army’s 5th Brigade to Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture. The members from the 27th Infantry Regiment (Light) – commanded by Masayuki Fukunaga – held a farewell party on May 26th. From the regimental base at Camp Kushiro, Fukunaga stated that, “Ishinomaki took a great deal of damage during the disaster, we’ll strive to give every one of those people affected the highest quality assistance.”

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A former contributor to World Intelligence (Japan Military Review), James Simpson joined Japan Security Watch in 2011, migrating with his blog Defending Japan. He has a Masters in Security Studies from Aberystwyth University and is currently living in Kawasaki, Japan. His primary interests include the so-called 'normalization' of Japanese security (i.e. militarization), and the political impact of the abduction issue with North Korea.
James Simpson has 254 post(s) on Japan Security Watch