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Messages from Hiroshima

Japanese version

Hisako Okuda (female)
'Chokubaku'  2.5 km from the hypocenter / 24 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. Many people wrote about the Atomic-bomb, composed poetry about it, drew pictures, and made films but none of them expressed enough of how we felt. As a victim of the A-bombing, I think they're far from what we have experienced. The devastation caused by the Atomic-bomb was far beyond our imagination or ability of expression and it was inhuman.

After having air raids each and every day, even though we thought we were mentally prepared to meet a similar fate to the others who had died, we didn't really believe it from the bottom of our hearts and never ever dreamed that we would experience that tragedy. After August 6, at 8:15 in the morning, the ground became hell. Having been baptized by the Atomic-bomb, we truly hope that we never ever experience such kind of tragedy in this world again.

We think we should appeal vigorously to the people of the world about the terror of the Atomic bomb which destroys everything in an instant. Because of the residual radioactivity, we're still suffering, grieving, shedding tears that never stop, feeling anxiety, enduring discrimination. In order to maintain world peace, we must make our case on the horrors of nuclear weapons to the countries that possess nuclear capability.

I was in a house which was located at 59, Atago-machi, Hiroshima City, 2.5kilometers from the hypocenter, at the time of the explosion.
The road in front of my house at that time was Route 2.
Even though my house was 2.5kilometers away from the hypocenter, roof tiles fell down, electric wires were dangling, and only half of the roads were passable. Around 9 or 10 o'clock, people whose bodies and clothes were torn to shreds were evacuating on foot, heading to the east countryside. People who couldn't walk were piled onto - trucks. I had never seen such a sight as that evacuation.

I wondered what had happened. It was the big question for me. There were only one or two enemy aircraft, and an air-raid alert had already been called off.

As I mentioned before, my house was 2.5kilometers away from the hypocenter but glass in the door was broken into pieces, the cabinets had fallen down, and the wall clock, the radio and some other things which were on top of the cabinets, had fallen down as well. Inside the room it was just like an overturned toy box.

At the time of the explosion, I was 21 years old.
The place where I was exposed to the A-bomb was Atago-machi, Hiroshima 2.5kilometers away from the hypocenter.