Former Spokane Shock Dancer Latest To Evacuate From Japan - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Former Spokane Shock Dancer Latest To Evacuate From Japan

SPOKANE, Wash. - Kimberly Loberg, former captain of the Spokane Shock Dance Team, flew back from Japan on Tuesday and picked up her bags from the Los Angeles airport like any other traveler. There was just one snag in her plans: she was returning two months early.

After living in Tokyo as a dancer for Japan's professional basketball team Tokyo Apache for close to three months, her team, The Tokyo Girls, decided to send some of the women back home for fear of continuing aftershocks and radiation scares.

Loberg described her experiences during a phone interview with KHQ. "I've been so heartbroken and seeing it on the TV, I just can't believe I'm here," she recalled when the earthquake first hit Japan. "This is so close to me. It's kind of unbelievable, like, I'm still in shock."

From there, Loberg said, it only seemed to get worse as the aftershocks relentlessly continued. "Every time an earthquake would happen "'I'm like 'Oh my gosh, what's going to happen next?' You're just always in constant fear."

Fear really set in for The Tokyo Girls once they heard about the radiation alerts.

"It was just like chaos," she said. "Just to be safe we had to get out of there and we're lucky we got out in time because as we leaving, everybody else was trying to get out."

Even if she had stayed, she might not have had a chance to cheer for her team anyway. In the aftermath of the quake and tsunami, Loberg said sporting events have been canceled and Tokyo prepared for rolling blackouts.

"It was the first year they ever had American dancers over there and, I mean, we made a huge impact but it all ended just way too abruptly," she continued. "We still have friends over there, teammates over there - it's just heartbreaking."

It's unclear what will happen with the rest of the Tokyo Girl's schedules.

Loberg is set to head back home to Spokane next week.

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