Anyone associated with an Atomic Veteran knows that government records will never present an accurate, honest history of the nuclear tests or the experiences and resultant injuries and casualties that participants have suffered. The true impact on families will never be known. We can preserve this history by passing our records on to the State Historical Societies, which are not government financed agencies.
In recent months, I have become familiar with the State Historical Societies and the historical records that they store and preserve. This plea is directed to all Atomic Veterans and their families to arrange to have all records, correspondence and Avet information (or copies) turned over to your State Historical Societies. ---County Historical Societies could limit the public's awareness of the availability of these records.
They will accept "personal papers" and responses from VA, DNA (NTRA), DOD etc., veteran experiences and histories. In short, any papers which have been generated by yourself and family and any government agency responses. They want nothing that is available to the general public that has been produced by government agencies and are considered "public domain". This means, they do not want all the government "reports' and "data", much of which the Avets and families recognize as only half truths.
I believe this to be the only way for Atomic Veterans and families to preserve the "real" history of the US Nuclear Test Program. One of my greatest fears is that future historians will note that the VA granted only a few claims for radiation exposure (less than 3% of all claims) and will come to the conclusion that only minimal injuries and only a few deaths resulted from the US Nuclear Test Program.
Let us not allow this nation to deny the existence of Atomic Veteran casualties.