Mr. Tatsuo Kawai, who passed away at the age of 102 on March 3, had contributed to the society of Kyushu region as the former Chairperson of Kyushu Electric Power Co., Inc. as well as the former Chairman of Kyushu Economic Federation for a long time. His role in and contribution to the society in Kyushu were second to none. He was really a great person with a significant presence.
I owe him much gratitude personally. I moved to Fukuoka Prefecture to prepare to run for election to the House of Representatives soon after I was defeated in the election in Kanagawa Prefecture in 1993. I had a hard time mainly because I had very few supporters at the time. In order to engage in political activities under such situation, support from the Kyushu Electric Power Company for my activities was essential. Then, I was determined to visit Mr. Kawai and asked him to become one of my main supporters. Mr. Kawai willingly accepted my offer. Consequently, whenever I had my supporters’ assembly for political campaigns, he was always invited as an honorable guest and delivered a speech for me. I am grateful that his speech always provided reassurance to the audience that I am a reliable and responsible person.
I attended a memorial ceremony for the late Mr. Kawai which was held in sorrow. I prayed for the repose of his soul.
These are some of the many lessons he left with us:
1. Do your best to complete any work assigned to you. Be Japan’s No.1 in your work;
2. Don’t complain, and don’t show your dissatisfaction;
3. Don’t run away from your responsibility; and
4. Be yourself. (Don’t push yourself to change your features, character, or image. If you are not yourself, anything you do will not last for long.)