Radioactive Man

Radioactive Man (Image 1)

He's called the worst most radioactive man…a Japanese farmer who has refused to leave his hometown despite it being less than six miles away from the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant.

Naoto Matsumura, 53, is the only remaining inhabitant of Tomioka. 

Tomioka used to be a thriving community of 16,000 people, but this was before the tsunami hit two years ago.

The government ordered everyone to leave, but Matsumura refuses to leave.  He has stayed on to feed the town's animals, including his own 50 cows and two ostriches.

The problem is, Mr. Matsumura is permanently exposed to up to 17 times the level of radiation that is considered safe. 

He's also put himself at further risk by eating food that has also been exposed to radiation.

It's so bad that researchers at the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency conducted test on Mr. Matsumura, and they found he has the highest level of radiation in anyone they have ever tested.

But Mr. Matsumura says he isn't worried.  He says he won't get sick until 30 or 40 years, and he figures he'll be dead by then anyway.

At first, after the tsunami hit, Matsumura left town to live with his parents.  But he says after a few days he could not bear the thought of the animals left to fend for themselves.  So he returned.

And he admits that he was scared of the radiation.. at first.  But now he believes he and the animals will be okay. 

Now, Matsumura has pledged to stay on as long as he can and care for the animals. 

He says, “I was born and raised in this town.  When I die, it's going to be in Tomioka.”



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