The atomic bombs that detonated over Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945 brought a horrific, devastating war to a close.
But it also represented the instant and complete annihilation of two cities, the brutal death of approximately 185,000 Japanese civilians* and the dawn of the nuclear weapons age.
In the 69 years since the first bomb fell over Hiroshima, pro- and anti-nuclear forces have used these two points to engage each other in a heated debate over the ethical necessity of nuclear weapons and their proliferation.
The first time Rick Dover stepped foot into Oak Ridge’s Alexander Inn, he fell through the floor. “It was completely rotted and it had leaking roofs and windows and a complete lack of any care or maintenance,” he says. “It was leaning and rotting and falling and it would not have gone much longer.”
Dover’s company, Family Pride Corporation, is now responsible for renovating the abandoned, dilapidated building and turning it into an assisted living facility. Dover says he hopes to open the facility in the summer of 2014.