The man who spoke to us. He was working the day shift. He said he got up, dressed and went to work without even knowing something had happened during the night. He spent several days once he reached the nuclear power plant helping to shut down the systems. He suffered no ill effects after the disaster. For several years doctors examined him two or three times a year, then twice a year and now only once a year. He is cancer-free so far.
This memo, written in Russian, classified "secret" and dated the day after the explosion, discusses what happened, how many were injured, and what was being done to contain the contamination. One was already dead and others were critical. A special aircraft flew 26 of them to Moscow for treatment.
For several days there were no news reports of the explosion of the reactor at Chernobyl. Finally, this very small item appeared in Ukrainian, though it provided no information about evacuations or the extent of the danger.
The disaster occurred at 1:22 a.m. the morning of 26 April. Gorbachev finally announced it to the Russian people in mid-May and then only because radiation readings in Western European nations were rocketing upwards.
The wall contains quotations from different worldwide scientists and philosophers throughout the decades. One quote on the wall of particular interest says, "It isn't necessary to purify the air and the water, it is more important not to contaminate it."
In Ukraine as well as much of Europe, when leaving a town there is a diagonal line drawn through its name. In this display, the line not only indicates leaving a town, but that the town no longer exists because it was evacuated after the disaster and the people never were allowed to return.