Have you heard about the "Radioactive Man" of Fukushima, Japan?
Following a major earthquake, a 15-meter tsunami disabled the power supply and cooling of three Fukushima Daiichi reactors, causing a devastating nuclear accident on March 11, 2011. The media made much of the heartbreaking human struggles in the aftermath of the disaster, but what hasn't been well documented is what happened to the animals that were left behind.
This is Naoto Matsumara. According to a recent article from Viral Thread, Naoto is the only human brave enough to live within the 12.5 mile exclusion zone within Fukushima. He originally fled with the rest of the population of the city, but plagued by concerns over the animals that were left behind, he returned to look after all the abandoned animals within the city's radiation zone.
According to an interview with Vice, Matsumura is being bombarded with as much as 17 times the amount of radiation a normal person is. However, after being examined by medical researchers and scientists he was told that despite his exposure he would not get sick from the radiation for up to 30-40 years. "I'll most likely be dead by then anyway, so I couldn't care less," Matsumura told Vice. He feels it was more important for him to take care of all the animals in the city that were left by their owners.
Referred to by his supporters as "the guardian of the animals," Naoto has freed all the animals in Fukushima that had been locked up by their owners, and now cares for them all himself. With all their natural sources of food decimated, the animals are completely dependent on Naoto. He in turn relies on donations from supporters around the world. The "radioactive man" has been on this mission since 2011 and continues his heroic work to this day. Bravo to this caring and kind man!
To see more inspiring pictures of the heroic journey of Naoto Matsumara and his animals, check out the full article here.