The so-called Fukushima 50 are volunteers: men prepared to sacrifice their own lives to save their country from nuclear disaster. It's a spirit of extraordinary self-sacrifice that's at the heart of Japanese culture. The fifty are wearing radiation suits, but the suits offer little protection against the very high doses of radiation they're facing.
One of the fifty sent out this message from the plant: "I am not afraid to die. That is my job."
Emperor Akihito of Japan made an unprecedented television address to the Japanese people, appealing for calm.
But across the world, there's a very different message.
The haunting images from the disaster zones tell their own poignant story. Snow is falling in northern Japan, leaving people to wonder whether it's contaminated with radiation. The empty shelves in grocery stores show the shortages of basic necessities facing the people of Japan.
Donald Trump watched in admiration and says he believes Japan has the strength and courage to face the crisis.
"They are strong people, they are a resourceful people they are an industrious people and they are going to pull through," said Trump.
Meanwhile, at the plant, huge buckets of water are being dropped into the reactors by helicopters to cool them. Some of the helicopters were unable to drop the water because of the risk of radiation.