“I am worried about what will happen to the world when there are no more atomic bomb survivors.”
Sumiteru Taniguchi, speaker, survivor of Nagasaki Atomic Bomb, 1945
He noted that the United States had never shown remorse for the damage caused by atomic weapons, but he was even harsher toward his own country.
“No one in the Japanese government has ever apologized about getting involved in that war, either,” he said.
— Matt Schudel, Washington Post
On Aug. 9, 1945, Sumiteru Taniguchi was delivering mail on his bicycle in Nagasaki, Japan. At 11:02 a.m., he noticed a rainbow-like flash and was thrown to the ground.
“When I looked up,” he said in a 1994 interview later broadcast on PBS, “the house I had just passed had been destroyed. The last house to which I distributed mail was still there. I also saw a child blown away. Big stones were flying in the air and one came down and hit me, then flew up again into the sky.”
Mr. Taniguchi, who was 16 at the time, was about one mile from the center of the explosion of the second atomic bomb dropped by U.S. forces on Japan. The city of Hiroshima had been leveled three days earlier. More than 200,000 people were estimated to have been killed in the two blasts.