15. “Mummy, I want to go home.”

  I am the mother of Masana Matsushita.

  My son, Masana was working at the Kumano Cannery as a mobilized student when he was in the Second Kanon Higher National Elementary School. Even when it was raining or the wind was blowing hard, he devoted himself to work every day for the country. Since the middle of July, he looked very tired giving a deep sigh as soon as he arrived home and lying down. Even though he wanted something to eat, we had nothing to give him. I think he lost his health, due to poor lunches every day, the summer heat, hard labor, not enough sleep, and malnutrition. He was a small and feeble boy.

  One day I took him to see the doctor at the Yoshino Clinic. The doctor told me that my son had better take a rest because he had some problems on his chest; however, the doctor didn't say that directly to my son. Then I said to my son, “Masana-chan, if you don't feel good, why don't you take four or five days off?” He answered, “We shouldn't say such a humiliating thing. Wherever I may fall down, I will work for my country.” He continued to work as a mobilized student. On August 6, he was exposed to the A-bomb, was burned and was covered with blood from cuts all over his body. He was taken home by Mr. Hiroyuki Nakano.

  We took him in a hurry to the Yoshino Clinic. The number of his white cells was as many as 10,500. So he couldn't go to the hospital any more. We had to ask the doctor to make house calls from that day on.

  When he was exposed to the A-bomb, he was weak. Moreover, burns and injury had considerably weakened him and his illness became worse and worse. We also asked Dr. Aidaya, who was working for the Mitsubishi Hospital in the neighborhood, to see my son. The two doctors consulted each other, and they suggested that he should be hospitalized at National Sanatorium in Hataga even though the possibility of recovery was very limited. We went through the procedure, and he was admitted there.

  After about six months, he became a little better and said,“I want to go home. I miss home. ” We then took him back home. Again, his condition became worse and worse. He passed away on January 11, 1948 in spite of my tender care.

Written by Hamano Matsushita (Eba Minami, Hiroshima)

Death in the Atomic boming :
Masana Matsushita (a second grader at the Second Kanon Higher National Elementary School)