Denver (KDVR) — It was a disaster that sent a radioactive cloud over eastern Europe, and sent fear all around the globe. A reactor at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in the former Soviet Union exploded in a fire ball, launching radioactive material into the atmosphere.
While most of us watched the disaster on TV, Hanah Polotsky of Denver lived it. She was a 12-year-old girl, living in Belarus, 70 miles from the disaster zone. The events of April 1986 upended her childhood, as she and her classmates were forced to evacuate – without their parents.
“When it happened, we did not know anything. And the government did not announce (it) for at least seven days, which is why people were exposed,” Polotsky told FOX31.
The explosion sent Polotsky on a path that would eventually lead her to the United States to practice medicine. Today, she is a doctor living in Denver with her husband and five kids. What happened at Chernobyl changed the course of her life, and inspired her to help others.
Polotsky shares her story in this FOX31 documentary, “Nuclear Option: A Doctor’s Journey from Chernobyl to Colorado,” which can be seen above.