Kenta Watanabe, Creator of VTuber Hot Springs Mascot Chizuru, Reported Missing in Oita Floods
posted on by Adriana Hazra
The Asahi Shimbun reported on Friday that Kenta Watanabe, the creator of the "Dennō Okami Chizuru" mascot character, has been missing since torrential rains caused floods and landslides across the Kyushu region in Japan on Tuesday. The police confirmed the death of Kenta Watanabe's grandmother Toshimi Watanabe (81), manager of the Ryokan Tsuruya Intaku inn, on Wednesday.
Kenta Watanabe (28) was in a car with his grandmother, and his parents Yumi (51) and Tomomi (54), when floods in the Oita region of Kyushu swept the car away. NHK World reported on Sunday that search parties are still looking for Kenta and his parents.
"Dennō Okami Chizuru" is the mascot of the Ryokan Tsuruya Intaku inn, which is located in the Yunohira hot spring district in Yufu. The character is also a VTuber, who disseminates tourist information about the Yunohira hot spring district and Ryokan Tsuruya Intaku. The character became popular, and a local voice actress was attached to the character.
Dennō Okami Chizuru's official Twitter account posted its most recent update on Tuesday evening stating that the staff of the Ryokan Tsuruya Intaku had temporarily evacuated.
The heavy rains in Japan over the last week have left 69 people dead, one person without vital signs, and 13 people missing. Most of the casualties are located in Kumamoto prefecture in Kyushu. Searches for missing people are still ongoing.
Thanks to Omiya for the news tip.