‘Yu-Gi-Oh!’ Creator Kazuki Takahashi Died Trying To Save Woman & Her Child
‘Yu-Gi-Oh!’ Creator Kazuki Takahashi Died A Hero, Passed Away Trying To Save Woman & Her 11-Year-Old Daughter From Drowning
Kazuki Takahashi, author of the popular ‘Yu-Gi-Oh!’ manga series, died a ‘hero’ after diving into a riptide in an attempt to save an 11-year-old girl, her mother and a serviceman who were drowning.
The 60-year-old vanished off the coast of Okinawa, southern Japan, on July 4 and was initially thought to have been snorkeling when he died.
But a newly released report by the United States Department of Defence has now shed light on the tragedy, revealing Mr Takahashi put himself in harm’s way to save three strangers. Major Robert Bourgeau, a 49-year-old U.S. Army officer and scuba diving instructor, was also in the unforgiving waters attempting the rescue.
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‘The conditions were really, really rough,’ he said. He was able to save the 11-year-old girl and doubled back for her mother, who was also struggling to stay afloat in the current. “I just kicked for all life,” Maj. Bourgeau recalled, noting he was quickly becoming ‘exhausted’ and at one stage even feared he would not survive.
At some stage during the rescue, Mr Takahashi also jumped in to help the remaining victim – a 39-year-old U.S. soldier. ‘He’s a hero. He died trying to save someone else,’ Maj. Bourgeau said.
The 49-year-old serviceman said in his witness statement he never saw Mr Takahashi in the water, but his two scuba students briefly saw him from the shore before he disappeared beneath the waves. While there was a dangerous undercurrent, relentless six-foot waves were also battering down, creating a whirlpool effect and essentially sucking the group underwater.
Japanese media including public broadcaster NHK said Mr Takahashi was found some 328 yards offshore and pulled from the water two days after he disappeared. ‘Yu-Gi-Oh!’ ran in the Japanese weekly comic magazine Shonen Jump between 1996 and 2004.
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