JAPANESE

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Messages from Hiroshima

Japanese version

Sachiko Masumura (female)
'Chokubaku'  2 km from the hypocenter / 12 years old at the time / current resident of Tokyo
2124

The scenes of the A-bombed city are introduced here. The photographs are not directly connected with the messages. What I cannot forget

My house was 700m away from the hypocenter. My parents, my second elder brother who was a third-year student in junior high school, and my little sister who was born just days earlier were at home. I was working in a potato field (the East Drill Grounds) for contribution of labor.

When the atomic bomb exploded, my father and my brother got caught under our collapsed house. My father barely managed to get out, but he could not help my brother although he was just within reach. My mother and my baby sister were at the engawa corridor facing the garden on the first floor of our house. They got severely burned, but they were out of the collapsed house. My father barely pulled himself out, but he could not save his son, whose head was within reach under the house. Because of the heat rays of the atomic bomb, fires had started instantly here and there in the neighborhood. The fire gradually got closer and became totally unbearable. The large pillars and walls over my brother did not move at all. My father yelled for help at the top of his voice.

"Father, it's burning hot already. I can't make it. Go and help Mother! Go now, father. Go please!"

"Sorry, I'm sorry. Forgive me!"

Hearing my brother's scream, my father began to step backwards. He ran to the nearby river protecting himself from the raging fire. Turning back on the riverbank, he saw the intense fire swirling around our house. He wished that my brother would get out of the flames between the burned debris, even if he got injured. "I'm having a nightmare. This could never happen," my father thought to himself as he kept staring at the flames on his house. After a while the fire burned out. He had a bad injury on his head and leg, but he didn't notice it.

My father miraculously recovered, but eight years later after the bomb, he died of chronic myelocytic leukemia.