We are but a few of the Survivors of the 1977-1980 Enewetak Atoll Atomic Debris Cleanup Mission in the Marshall Islands.
Our Original Mission was to relocate radioactive fallout and debris from the surface of the islands of Enewetak Atoll so the dri-Enewetak Islanders could return to their beautiful homeland of 40 Islands at Enewetak Atoll in the Marshall Islands.
Atomic Cleanup Help Wanted – The Defense Nuclear Agency is looking for personnel required to clean up radioactive debris and soils contaminating 40 islands in the Marshall Islands located in a remote area of the Pacific Ocean known from 1946 – 1958 as the Pacific Proving Grounds for the U.S. Nuclear Test Era directed by the Atomic Energy Commission.
Forty-three atomic bombs were tested at Enewetak Atoll leaving behind radioactive fallout and debris from over 1100 megatons of yield created by detonating Americium-241, Cesium-137, Cobalt-60, Plutonium-239, Plutonium-240, Strontium-90 and other radioactive elements.
One hour accumulated background radiation levels vary depending on said island. Three of the 40 islands show 62,849 R/h on Runit Island, 3,501 R/h on Enjebi Island, and 651 R/h at the Lojwa Island Base Camp.
The Defense Nuclear Agency has been authorized by the U.S. Federal Government to hire personnel from government approved private sector contractors, various federal government agencies, a government approved marine biology lab, and volunteers from current members of the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard. No hazardous duty pay will be provided. No special health insurance shall be provided. A modest per Diem pay (less daily expenses) shall be provided. Military Transportation shall be provided. Housing (IE: tents with cots, temporary structures with metal bunk-beds and wall lockers, furnished trailers, furnished permanent structures) shall be provided. Meals shall be provided. Laundry shall be provided. Limited medical care shall be provided.
Participants are expected to work ten to twelve hour days, six days a week for the average 179 day assignment. Radiation protective gear (IE: none, painters masks, gas masks, or full radiation suits and equipment) shall be provided.
Amenities include living on at least one of the secluded tropical islands with fantastic views of starlit skies, Pacific Ocean sunrises and Enewetak Atoll’s beautiful lagoon sunsets. Free waterfront activities include: 24 hour day or night waterfront walks or sitting on the beach, watching the waves, collecting shells, watching sea-life (IE: sharks, dolphins, whales, flying fish, parrot-fish, lobsters, etc), fishing for sharks, swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, spearfishing, 12′ sunfish sailing, catamaran sailing, military boat and helicopter rides.) Other amenities may or may not include: retail stores, outdoor theaters, local broadcast television, local broadcast radio, USO Shows, baseball games, jogging, weight lift equipment, barbershop, pool tables, clubhouses, outdoor grilling, rat stomping and lots of parties.
Other than the provided postal mail system, opportunities to converse with families and friends will be rare. No family members will be allowed to visit. All information about the atomic cleanup mission shall remain confidential until an undisclosed date.
Applicants shall be aware that this mission is the last and final stage of the Atomic Test Program which began as the Manhattan Project and is a part of the Human Radiation Experiment Program.
Job positions required include but is not limited to radiation testing personnel, construction skilled and semi-skilled laborers who will locate and hand carry radioactive debris to one of several designated areas for disposal, concrete workers, framers, plumbers, electricians, machinists, heavy equipment operators, dump truck operators, boat operators, helicopter crew members, demolition experts, explosive ordinance experts, crane operators, LARC crew members, medical staff, cafeteria staff, supply personnel, laundry staff, security personnel, operations and administrative personnel.
Applicants shall be contacted by their employers or military superiors for an opportunity to volunteer or will be voluntold to participate in this confidential mission. Upon completion of the 1977 – 1980 Enewetak Atoll Atomic Debris Cleanup Mission, most participants (including state side personnel required to record radiation readings from urine samples collected from cleanup participants) shall be awarded the Humanitarian Medal from the U.S. Government as a gesture of thanks for putting yourself in harms way while preparing the islands for the return of the people who lived at Enewetak Atoll before the atomic tests began.
Please be aware that although most health complications caused by exposure to ionized radiation may not be detected for up to 30 to 50 years after exposure, no long term health care studies will be provided after your participation of the mission. Classified documents including personnel records, health records, radiation records, and other documents will be maintained by the U.S. Federal Government and will not be accessible or will have limited access in the future.
The above advertisement is a piece of pure fiction. It was never posted by anyone or any government agency prior to this publication. It was written as if the truth in advertising and full disclosure were standard operational procedures and was practiced for classified government and military operations.
The content however, is closer to the truth than what was commonly disclosed prior to most volunteering or being “voluntold” to participate in the 1977 – 1980 Enewetak Atoll Atomic Cleanup Mission.
I was one of the few from the 8,000+ participants who volunteered. In fact, I volunteered twice for a total of 14 months at Enewetak Atoll. Most of the Atomic Cleanup Veterans were voluntold to participate in the mission.
I’m one of the lucky veterans who served at the atoll with limited health complications. I’ve met many who are struggling with health challenges. Our roster survey shows about one-third state they have no health challenges. However, two-thirds believe we are experiencing health challenges due to our exposure to ionizing radiation.
The government refuses to admit our exposure to radiation during the cleanup mission was considered a “radiation-risk” activity. The government continues to state our exposure to radiation was “occupational” in nature.
Please write your federal representative and let them know you support our efforts to change the current laws by including the 1977 – 1980 Enewetak Atoll Atomic Cleanup Veterans as Atomic Veterans (as defined in RECA) as experiencing radiation risk exposure to radiation.
Continue to learn more about us from various resources shared by supporters and cleanup participants in future AtomicCleanupVets.com articles. Our articles contain photographs, videos, documents and stories written by the actual participants who cleaned radioactive contaminated soils and materials from the surface of the islands at Enewetak Atoll.
Article written by Girard Frank Bolton, III. 1977-1979 (14 month) participant with C Company and HHC S-3 (Operations) 84th Engineer Battalion (Combat Heavy) (Fwd) Enewetak Atoll, Marshall Islands.
Our Current Mission is to help health challenged Atomic Cleanup Veterans become included in the Veterans Administration’s definition of an Atomic Veteran so we can qualify to apply for funds set aside for veterans “who participated in radiation-risk activities during active service.”