Frail and unable to walk very far, Kunio Shiga survived off what he had in his home for nearly a month.
Shiga’s farmhouse is just 12 miles from the Fukushima Nuclear Plant, part of the area that was part of the evacuation order.
But the 75-year-old man has trouble walking and was unable to leave the area. Shiga holed himself up in his home since disaster hit, the AP reports. All of his neighbors have left amidst warnings of radiation and he has no idea where his wife is. “She was here, but now she’s gone,” he said.
(More on TIME.com: See photos of the devastation across Japan)
In a house with no heat, running water or electricity, Shiga was in survival mode for the past month and close to depleting his food supply. AP reporters searching for signs of life inside the evacuation zone saw him wandering outside his house Friday. They approached his doorstep and found the scruffy-bearded man scared, confused and hungry.
Shiga, who listened to the news on a battery powered radio, told the reporters they were the first people he had spoken to since the tsunami and offered to pay if they could give him food. He said he heard the evacuation order but could not do anything because his car was stuck in mud and he can’t walk further than his front gate.
Though it’s surrounded by fallen trees, debris and dead pig carcasses, his house still stands in one piece. “The tsunami came right up to my doorstep,” he told reporters, who gave him water and energy bars before notifying the police of his situation. But despite finally being rescued, Shiga doesn’t feel terribly optimistic about his situation. “I’m old and I don’t know if I could leave here. I don’t want to go anywhere,” he said.
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