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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 January 31 - February 6  > Running while delivering Akahata, the life of a JCP member
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2018 January 31 - February 6 [JCP]

Running while delivering Akahata, the life of a JCP member

January 29, 2018
Takei Ryoichi lives in Tokyo's suburban city of Machida and has been running to deliver the daily Akataha and Akahata Sunday edition for 46 years since he joined the Japanese Communist Party.

He used to run ten kilometers every day, but as he turned 81 he now runs about five kilometers in 50 minutes before dawn with a reflective sash across his shoulder. On Sundays he has a day off.

In his childhood, he had a paper route to support the family. Immediately after he graduated from junior high school, he got a job at an electrical company. While he continued working, he went to night classes at high school and university. His efforts bore fruit at the age of 26. He became a junior high school teacher in technical education.

Takei often said to his students, "The purpose of learning is to be able to question things and this is very important." The same applies to politics, he realized. It was around that time that he discovered Akahata which revealed the essence of politics and society. In 1972, he at the age of 35 became a JCP member. Then, his running life with Akahata started.

The running man delivering Akahata looked interesting to other papermen on motor bikes or bicycles as well as to his neighbors. One day someone asked him, "Which paper are you delivering?" Takei recalled, "That person became an Akahata subscriber."

Over 60 years of age, he traveled 3,000 kilometers running from Hokkaido to Okinawa. After his mandatory retirement, he actively ran marathons both at home and abroad. He once won the title in the 70s division in the Great Wall Marathon in China.

Loved by many students, Takei still communicates with them. He smiled with a banner in his hands which his former students made which reads, "Okinawa-Tokyo marathon, Go for it, Mr. Takei!" and said, "My dream is to run in the Honolulu Marathon at the age of 100. I will hang in there another 20 years."

His running life with Akahata seems to be far from over.

Past related article:
> 90 years of daily Akahata, 'It teaches me about the world' [January 28, 2018]
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