The English School Welcomes Hiroshima Victim
On May 22, the English School was honoured to welcome Mr Keijiro Matsushima from Hiroshima, Japan, to give a personal testimony to students about his experiences as a survivor of the World’s first wartime nuclear bomb explosion, said the school in a statement.
Mr Matsushima gave a very moving account of events in Hiroshima on 6 August 1945 and his feelings as a young sixteen year old student at that time. Students and staff felt privileged to listen to Mr Matsushima’s story and inspired by his strength, positivity and determination.
In his testimony, titled ‘The A-bomb that I experienced’, Matsushima described how during a math lecture, he heard ‘the huge noise of the blast.’ ‘Chanting Buddhist prayers, Amitabha Buddha, honestly I thought of death and Mom…’ he went on. Oblivious to the massive destruction of the bombing, he explained how he soon realized the severity of the explosion as he gazed at both sides of a nearby river ‘burning violently like burning weed.’
Matsushima, who later pursued a teaching career, went on to teach English as a foreign language and thereafter became principal of a school in the south-side of Hiroshima.
Nonetheless, he chose not to speak about the A-bomb much. ‘Being able to live 67 years after that day, what a happy person I am!’ he says with a smile. ‘I often remember those burned young boys and girls, who were all walking slowly helplessly, and I feel that I still have a lot to do for them. Each of them must have wanted to live long and enjoy his or her happy life. It is my mission to tell more people of the world that those children wanted to say.’
Mr. Matsushima was invited to the island by the House of Representatives, who selected the English School in appreciation of the money students donated to the tsunami disaster fund last year.
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