Kerry reflected on the impact of the 8.9 magnitude earthquake that shook Japan on March 11, 2011, and the "gut-wrenching" images of destroyed homes and whole cities. He also recalled the courage demonstrated by Japanese citizens and volunteers who responded to the natural disaster.
"Today, we remember the courage of the citizens of the Tohoku region and all of Japan. We remember the volunteers from nations around the world who dug deep and pitched in. And we remember the outpouring of emotion, from public condolences to those who shared their grief in private ways -- and still do."
The earthquake also triggered a meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.