At 8:15 am, Hiroshima time, the Enola Gay released the nuclear bomb called “Little Boy” from its bay. The bomb was executed precisely according to schedule, right over the center of the city and made its descent. Meanwhile, the three planes quickly maneuvered their ways away from the bomb. Within 45 seconds, “Little Boy” was poised at about 600 meters above the city (Marx 168).
Then the world dissolved in a "bright purple flame" (Marx 169).
In the minute space of time the bomb exploded, the release of power instantly generated a temperature of one hundred million degrees Celsius. The mushroom cloud began to form all at once, followed by the shock wave. Fire storms sprang up immediately on the ground. This was the aerial view of the explosion as described by the men aboard the planes (Marx 170:172).
"These special Polaroid goggles we had, they seemed to black out everything so you couldn't see any thing at all. But the light was so intense when that bomb was detonated that it even pierced those glasses...It was a boiling action and full of all kinds of colors, but you could tell there was nothing but death in that cloud."
---Bob Shumard, on board the Enola Gay. (Marx 174)
"When you're looking at it, you know that a tremendous amount of energy has been released. There was one thought that was uppermost on everyone's mind. Somebody said, and I thought too, "This war is over." You didn't see how anybody—even the most radical, militaristic, uncaring for their people—how anybody like that could stand up to something like this."
---Ted Van Kirk, navigator of the Enola Gay (Van Kirk)
"My God. What have we done?"
---Bob Lewis, pilot of the Enola Gay (Marx 172)
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Marx, Joseph L. Seven Hours to Zero. New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1967.
"Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki." Atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 11 Jul. 2005. Wikipedia. 11 Jul. 2005 <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atomic_bombings_of_Hiroshima_and_Nagasaki>.