The only official survivor of both the atomic bombs that fell on Hiroshima and Nagasaki has died. Tsutomi Yamaguchi was aged 93 and had been suffering from stomach cancer.
Although up to 100 people are thought to have lived through both bombings, Yamaguchi was the only ‘eniijuu hibakusha,’ or “double bomb sufferer” to be officially recognised by Japanese authorities.
At 08:15 in the morning of August 6, 1945, the engineering draftsman was on a business trip in Hiroshima when the first atom bomb, called ‘Little Boy’ exploded over the town. Although badly burned, Yamaguchi returned to his home town, Nagasaki.
There, at just after 11:00 in the morning on August 9, while Yamaguchi was describing his ordeal to his boss, American pilots dropped a second atomic bomb, ‘Fat Man.’
An estimated 140,000 people were killed in Hiroshima and around 75,000 died in Nagasaki. Tens of thousands more suffered radiation poisoning in the aftermath.
Yamaguchi said later: “I thought the mushroom cloud had followed me.”