Testimony of Mamoru Yukihiro

Mr. Mamoru Yukihiro was 36 years old when the bomb fell. He was at the agricultural office of Hiroshima prefecture, one kilometer away from the general affairs section at that time, rescued many people who were caught under the crumbled buildings. He lost two of his children because of the A-bomb.

YUKIHIRO: When the bomb struck, we were all in the big room. We've just finished the morning gathering of all the employees at around 8:05 a.m. And while we were putting the papers in order and cleaning up, we saw a yellow ray of light from the north of the city hall and we heard a big noise. The next moment, our office was totally destroyed. I was standing when the blast hit. Right away, I was thrown about 3 yards together with the desks, the chairs, and even parts of the ceiling. The next moment, it was pitch black. I couldn't see anything.

INTERVIEWER: Uh....how was it when you saw the ray?

YUKIHIRO: Immediately after I saw the strange yellow ray, the office was totally destroyed almost instantly, without any warning. It was as if a box of matches has suddenly been struck by a hammer and crushed to pieces. I didn't even hear any sound. I sat still for a while, and then, I saw the sun ray come in above me. So I managed to get up, but I couldn't find any of the 200 employees. Even though I myself had 3 wounds on my head and one on my back, I was so surprised that I walked out, I walked out onto the street with the blood running down my body. In the street, all I found were wounded people and destroyed houses. My house was located about one kilometer away from there, I thought that if I had rushed back to my home, I might have been able to rescue my own family, who were caught under the crumbled house, by myself. But I just couldn't do it, I couldn't leave those 200 people who had all worked so hard at the bank. I convinced myself somehow that if I had helped those people, God would help my family. So I went back to the office to try and rescue my colleagues. It took me about an hour to break through a 7 centimeter thick board under which some of my colleagues were trapped. I hammered at the board with a piece of stone and finally broke through. Finally I pulled out Officer Takashina and then one woman,and then after that Mr. Yamamura, another section chief. Seventy-four of the employees of the bank died including those who were on their way to the office. Some died in trains, some died in the street. It was such a terrible tragedy. For one some after the A-bomb fell, I was terrible busy. I had to settle all the business of the bank since I was the only one with the authority to draw up the papers, on which all the renewed credit agreements were based. Just a month later, I found many red spots all over my body. My friend said, my friends told me that there must be something wrong with me. I checked these red spots with my fingers. I thought they might be mosquito bites, but they weren't. So, I went to see the doctor at the social welfare hospital in Ujina. This doctor was the director of the internal medicine department and he used to be our company doctor. He told me I should take a white corpuscle examination because I was not in good shape. He found out that my white corpuscle account was only 1200, compared to account of 6000 for a healthy man. Then, I went to Yoshida Hospital and I recovered. But my wife got uterine cancer in 1949. It was detected early and so she underwent an operation. My daughter who was bombed when she was four years old lived in Hiroshima with us for a long time after the A-bomb fell. She went to a local elementary school attached to the university. When she was in the fourth grade, she began to lose weight. By the second term of her sixth grade year, she became very skinny.. She had to stay in bed and she couldn't go to school. I was afraid that my daughter had some illness caused by the A-bomb radiation. But the local doctor said that she just caught a cold, then I went to another doctor at Mizuno Clinic, west of the Kokusai Hotel. This doctor said that she was suffering from a serious case of anemia, not just a cold, and that she needed to be hospitalized. So she was hospitalized. When she was given a blood transfusion, she felt relief immediately. Her pillow was covered with three or four towels each night and these towels became bloody each morning because she was bleeding from her gums during the night. But she washed the towels by herself each morning to hide them from me. I think she was embarrassed. Since she was suffering from an illness caused by the atomic bomb radiation, the media including the television, the newspapers, NHK, Chugoku Broadcasting and many others came to interview her. At first she refused to meet the press because she didn't want other people to see her miserable condition. I told her that she was the first A- bomb survivor who suffered from an internal disease caused by the A-bomb radiation. Many other survivors had already died, hiding themselves from the public. I also said that she was the only person who could show the disease and help the other victims in the future. She understood what I'm at and she decided to talk and to let them take pictures. Finally, at the beginning of February of 1954, she died. If one country drops a nuclear bomb, the other ones would do the same for sure. This is the fact. It will eventually destroy the entire world. I hope that the nations of the world stop nuclear war now and forever.

Return to Index