At 8 years old, Shigeaki Mori saw his home town of Hiroshima obliterated when the U.S. military dropped the first wartime atomic bomb in 1945. As an adult, he spent decades researching and contacting family members of 12 U.S. prisoners of war who were also killed in that explosion so that they, too, would be remembered as victims.
The devastating bombing and Mori’s tireless efforts are detailed in a documentary called “Paper Lanterns,” discussed at a Northeastern event honoring Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage month.
Although the bombing happened 75 years ago, its lessons about the toxicity of hate and the redemptive power of empathy remain relevant, said the film’s producer, Nobuko Saito Cleary.
“It shows how important it is to respect the different person, even though they were enemies,” said Saito Cleary, who graduated from Northeastern with a bachelor’s degree in English in 1970.