translated by Brett Larner
Sanitary and housing equipment manufacturer Toto held a sendoff meeting Sept. 11 at its offices in Shiodome, Tokyo for company workers to voice their support for Incheon Asian Games women's marathon team member Eri Hayakawa, 32, and other Toto-sponsored athletes. Three athletes were feted including members of the Asian Paralympics team. Hayakawa vowed to supporters that she would go for the gold medal, telling them, "As a national representative I am aware of my responsibility, and I will do my best to produce results that will let me finish with the best kind of smile and bring you all back good news."
The Toto-sponsored athletes competing in the Paralympics are women's wheelchair basketball player Chihiro Kitada, 25, and women's wheelchair tennis player Miho Nijo, 33. Using language chock full of Kansai slang, Takada made the full house laugh as she said, "I'm totally surprised to see the place packed like this. Sometimes I get caramels at work too, so Toto is really the best place to work. I didn't end up here by accident." Nijo commented, "I've been lucky to have been sponsored by Toto for the last seven years. I believe I can bring home a medal."