A 60-year quest / Historian searches for A-bomb victims





With the help of Japanese historian Shigeaki Mori, a British airman recently was added to Nagasaki's list of atomic-bomb victims, after his death in the bombing on Aug. 9, 1945, while being held as a prisoner of war, was confirmed.

A portrait of Royal Air Force Cpl. Ronald Shaw was offered to the Nagasaki National Peace Memorial Hall for Atomic Bomb Victims by his family, who recently learned of Shaw's fate through information provided by Mori, 68, in Hiroshima.

Shaw became the 10th POW confirmed killed in Nagasaki by the plutonium bomb called Fatman, according to the Nagasaki city government.

He was captured by Japanese forces in Java after his plane was shot down. Although the Japanese vessel that was transporting him was sunk by a U.S. submarine, he was rescued and brought to the prison camp in Nagasaki, 1.65 kilometers from the hypocenter.

Shaw and other POWs were forced to work at a shipyard. On Aug. 9, the atomic blast ripped through the camp and Shaw was crushed under debris.

About 200 POWs are believed to have been held at the camp at the time of the bombing.

Mori, who has researched Hiroshima's atomic-bomb victims for almost 30 years, also helped have the names of six U.S. POWs who died in the city recorded on its list of atomic-bomb victims beneath the Cenotaph for the A-bomb Victims at the Peace Memorial Park from 1996 to 2004.

He also helped the families of eight U.S. POWs, including these six, dedicate portraits of the servicemen to the Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims in 2004.


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