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Nago City planning to invite German Chancellor during Summit

Date Posted: 1999-10-30

On October 22nd, Friday, the Mayor of Nago City gave his blessings to plans of inviting German Prime Minister to a Friendship Appreciation Ceremony, which accommodates Dr. Scorebrandís dedication to Airakuen, that is a leprosy medication facility in Nago City. The Friendship Promoting Division of the Nago City Summit Promoting Committee planned this event, hoping to invite German Chancellor Gerhardt Schroeder and his wife during the period of the Summit Meeting next July.

Dr. Scorebrand was born in 1904 and brought up in Germany. He graduated medical school in the University of Weimar. Later, the anti-Nazi activist had to undergo naturalization as an American citizen in order to protect himself from the pressure of Nazis. After he became a US citizen, he joined the Medical Team of the US Army and engaged in the training of medical attendants. Prior to this, he received Ph.D in Public Health from the University of North Carolina and a Ph.D in Medicine from Duke University. Until 1948, he did research on diseases and medication after he encountered patients who suffered from Hansenís disease.

In 1949, he came to Okinawa as chief of the Public Health Division of the US Military to work with people who suffered from leprosy, Hansenís disease and poor health conditions of the medical facility in Okinawa. Afterward, he was inaugurated as a chief of the Public Health Division, he started his activity towards saving patients of Hansenís disease with effective medication, especially in Airakuen - Nago City.

The Friendship Appreciation Ceremony will hold with the purpose of showing appreciation for Dr. Scorebrandís efforts with the Hansenís disease patients of the Airakuen medical facility. The facility is still standing at the same site in Nago City. In the middle of the site, there is a portrait bust of Dr. Scorebrand and a bell that was presented by German people in 1953. It is called the ďBell of Hope and ConfidenceĒ. And the plaza where this bust is located is named Scorebrand Park.

The planned ceremony will take place at this memorial park. The Mayor of Nago City admitted the project, and they are now waiting on permission from the Prefectural Summit Promotion Peopleís Council, the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany. Details on the scheduled event will be decided this November.

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