London, Jun 5: The co-pilot of a plane that dropped an atomic bomb on Nagasaki in Japan, has died of congestive heart failure at the age of 88. Charles Donald Albury died in a hospital on May 23 says media reports.
During the Second World War, Albury helped fly the B-29 Bockscar that dropped the bomb on Aug 9, 1945. He also witnessed the deployment of the first atomic bomb over Hiroshima three days earlier as a pilot for a support plane.
His plane dropped instruments to measure the magnitude of the blast and levels of radioactivity for the Hiroshima mission led by Col. Paul Tibbets Jr. The 10,200-pound explosive instantly killed an estimated 40,000 people. Another 35,000 died from injuries and radiation sickness. Japan surrendered on Aug 14.
Albury said he felt no remorse, since the attacks prevented what was certain to be a devastating loss of life in a US invasion of Japan.
After the war, Albury settled in Coral Gables, Florida, with his wife and flew planes for Eastern Airlines.