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Messages from Nagasaki

Japanese version

Masami Kamito (male)
'Chokubaku'  1.9 km from the hypocenter / 14 years old at the time / current resident of Nagasaki

Photographer: Eiichi Matsumoto.
The scenes of the A-bombed city are introduced here. The photographs are not directly connected with the messages.
I was then fourteen years old. When I entered Mitsubishi Electric Nagasaki Factory as a trainee, I lived in the dormitory in Shiroyama 1-chome, from where we trainees went to the training facilities located up above the dormitory or to our school, which was then called Ko-Sho commercial high school in Katafuchi-machi, alternating between the two sites every three days.

The day the atomic bomb fell, it was my training day. Along with some fellow trainees I had gone to the main workshop by truck. After having finished our work, we were on our way back and had stopped in Asahi-machi. We were sitting on top of the truck, waiting for our boss. At that moment, there was a tremendous flash and sound. We fell down on our faces on the truck and later took refuge in the air raid shelter at the factory. At around 3 pm, we were walking back to the dormitory when there was another air raid, and once again we ran into an air raid shelter. In the shelter, we saw some injured and burned people. When the air raid alert was cancelled, we walked back to the dormitory only to find it all burned down.

In the field up above the dormitory, we picked some pumpkins, boiled them in the dirty well water and ate. We spent the night with broom grass from the field spread over and covering us. In the morning, we cleared the place. Toward evening when we went to our school in Katafuchi-machi, we found our school packed with injured and burned people.

After that, I went back and forth between Shiroyama and our school for about a week. On the way I met with a lot of disastrous scenes: in and on the Urakami River we saw dead people and dying people asking for water; on the roadside a dead man was swollen like a hog, knocked down along with the electric pole he had climbed to do some work; on Matsuyama Bridge, there was a dead horse with its internal organs popped out; and nearby four men were sitting dead, with their hands supporting galvanized sheet iron.

When we felt hungry while we were clearing the ruins of the dormitory and burning corpses, we ate burnt soy beans and rice and some canned food which we picked out from among the debris. On the seventh day, I went back home.

After I came home, I was in bad condition with high fevers and suffered from diarrhea for more than a month. I had an atomic bomb disease evaluation and the result was "in need of thorough examination". And now, I still often suffer from high fevers and am always in great anxiety.

I wish from the bottom of my heart that there will be world peace as soon as possible.