A haunting postcard from Pripyat

Relics of the meltdown: The ruins of the Chernobyl region, as captured by an airborne GoPro

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While on assignment in Chernobyl with Bob Simon's 60 Minutes team, cameraman Danny Cooke captured striking, eerie footage of abandoned towns. Places where people once lived, played and worked are now rusted ruins -- relics of a time before the meltdown and evacuation.

In this short film, Cooke has put together video that he shot -- from a drone-mounted camera and from the ground -- of the city of Pripyat, which sits just a few miles from the damaged, radioactive reactor.

The music in the video was composed by Yevgen Goncharenko, who was the team's guide during their time in Chernobyl.


A special post by cameraman Danny Cooke:

Chernobyl is one of the most interesting and dangerous places I've been.

The nuclear disaster, which happened in 1986, the year after I was born, had an effect on so many people, including my family, then living in Italy. As the nuclear dust clouds swept westward towards us, the Italian police came around and threw away all the local produce, and my mother rushed out to purchase as much tinned milk as possible to feed me, her infant son.

If the meltdown caused so much distress so many hundreds of miles away, I can't imagine how terrifying it was for the hundreds of thousands of locals who were evacuated.

During my recent visit to the region while on assignment with 60 Minutes, I met so many amazing people, one of whom was my guide Yevgen. We spent the week together, exploring Chernobyl and the nearby abandoned city of Pripyat.

There was something serene, yet highly disturbing, about this place. Time has stood still, and there are memories of past happenings floating around us.

Armed with a camera and a dosimeter, I explored, and after the shoot put together this film of some of what we saw.

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