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Messages from Hiroshima

Japanese version

Yukie Shono (female)
'Chokubaku'  2 km from the hypocenter / 18 years old at the time / current resident of Hiroshima

The scenes of the A-bombed city are introduced here. The photographs are not directly connected with the messages. The events of the day we were A-bombed are seared into my memory, still vivid to this day. That morning, the tremendous flash and sound came as soon as I sat down to relax after I returned home. My mother, younger brother, my aunt, and I, carrying my younger sister on my back, ran barefoot out of our half-collapsed home. Houses were burning all around us.

Everyone was desperate to save themselves, and no one would help those who cried out, "Help me!" from beneath the collapsed homes. There were burned people cooling themselves off in the Ota River. There were four or five soldiers who had been working topless. The skin on their backs and the soles of their feet had peeled and was hanging off. They stomped on the ground, crying that it hurt. We saw all kinds of people along the way as we ran for our lives, and we finally reached our relatives who lived atop a hill near Furuichibashi Station. It was truly terrifying. At dusk, black rain began to fall.

We decided to sleep in the shrine by the mountain, but it was so full of people that we could barely sit. Our aunt was missing. We stayed for about four nights. We were waiting for a bus out to the countryside at Furuichibashi Station when we saw a young man sitting on the bench with his whole body wrapped in bandages except his eyes, nose, and mouth. In a tiny voice, he asked for some water, so I took him to a waterway right in front of us. He probably didn't live long after that. When the bus made it to Kake and we saw our sister, grandmother, and grandfather, we hugged each other and cried.

My father and mother have passed on, but I have been allowed to live to this day. I am thankful for this. I hope that such a thing will never be repeated.