Readers Needed for Vigil in Observance of 75th Anniversary of Atomic Bombings

July 13, 2020

Hiroshima and Nagasaki Vigil Planned for Aug. 8

The Peace Resource Center (PRC) at Wilmington College is seeking 75 community members to each read one of 75 testimonials from survivors of the 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II.

PICTURED: A volunteer reader shares the testimonial of an atomic bombing survivor during the vigil held in 2015.

In commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the atomic bombings, WC’s Hiroshima and Nagasaki Vigil will be Aug. 8, from 8:15 a.m. to 8:15 p.m., at the Meriam R. Hare Quaker Heritage Center (QHC) gallery in Boyd Cultural Arts Center. The event will be livestreamed to the public.

The 12 continuous hours of readings, which were curated from the PRC’s internationally recognized archives, will honor the 200,000-plus civilian victims of the American military’s use of nuclear weapons Aug. 6 and 9, 1945, on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, respectively. Many believe the tragedy hastened the end of World War II, albeit at a terrible toll of human life.

Dr. Tanya Maus, director of the PRC and QHC, noted the importance of acknowledging history while building for a more peaceful world. “In light of recent injustices in our country, there is no better time than now to commemorate and learn from the past to create a safer, happier future — not just for our country, but for the world.”

Those wishing to participate as readers can schedule a time by contacting Maraya Wahl, the PRC/QHC’s volunteer event coordinator, by Aug. 5, at <> or <>. The survivors’ testimonials range in length from a couple of minutes to 25 minutes.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, no live audience will be allowed at the vigil and physical distancing will be employed between the reader and a maximum of two participants waiting to read in the 2,000 square-foot gallery. Also, all fixtures that might have been touched by participants and staff will be sanitized between readings.