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Do you know any pow's?

Old 05-26-2018, 03:06 PM
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Default Do you know any pow's?

I did but he passed a few years back. He was one of my Dad's clients and they became friends.

If you asked him how long he was a pow he would answer you to the minute. It was over 3 years.

I was a little kid and he would tell my Dad about what happened etc and I would listen. He also let me fish in his stocked pond.

One time he said a good friend was one you could lay your arm on the tracks and a good friend would break it for you. They worked them to death this was the only way to get a break from working.

He was a pastor in the army. The Japanese got him. He was on the bataan death march and everything.

When he was liberated he took a rifle and sword off a high ranking Japanese officer. The rifle is silver plated. He left them to my Dad when he passed and one day they will be mine. They are quite valuable, but there is a zero percent chance they will ever be sold.

I was prob too young to hear some of his stories they were pretty awful and i learned at an early age that some men's hearts are black and very cold.

if my Dad ever bought my mom a Japanese car he would have been fired on the spot

So while your boating and bbqing remember what memorial day us really about.
Old 05-26-2018, 03:28 PM
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M y great uncle James Francis boscarino. W W2 usmc msgt.. Wake island. Rip unc
Old 05-26-2018, 03:35 PM
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One lived across the street from my FIL.
He was six foot tall and was a ball turret gunner in a B17. The plane got hit and one of the crew got him out (as he could not get out himself). He bailed out and the man that got him out did not make it out of the aircraft. He said as soon as he left the shuttering, noisy aircraft it was calm and silence.

He hit the ground and broke his ankle. The farmers had pitchforks and were about to kill him. A German soldier ran up and stopped them. He asked the German soldier if he had a light as he had a cigarette in his mouth. The German soldier butt stroked him in the face with a rifle. He then marched 50 to 100 miles on a broken ankle to a Stalag. He spent several years as a POW. He was the only one of if his crew to get out. He died a few years ago....A great man like all of our "Greatest Generation"...Thank you, Mr. Wilson and all those like him !!!
Old 05-26-2018, 03:48 PM
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My grandfather was a belly gunner on B17’s. He was shot down on his 23rd mission. He ended up in Stalag 17B in Austria. I have his diary from his time there. He was freed by the allied advance. He died about 12 years ago.
Old 05-26-2018, 04:30 PM
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For many years, the barber I went to had numbers tattooed on his forearm.
We never spoke about the reason why.
Old 05-26-2018, 04:55 PM
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A couple actually. One I never met, however, though he was my grandfather.

My grandfather lived in Germany. He might be better classified as a political prisoner than a POW, though. He was a vocal opponent of Hitler and the Nazis. Toward the end of the war, he was arrested, and executed by firing squad. My mother never really knew him, as she was very young. She only has one photo of him. In the photo, he is swimming near a small iceberg.

My Father-in-Law was a POW, sort of. He was an interrogator with the South Vietnamese Army. He fought alongside the Americans against the North Vietnamese. He was actually on the last flight out of Saigon. He got off the plane as his wife and kids were not on the plane. Soon after, he was arrested and spent 11 years in prison. For the most part, he was fed only rice. Any proteins came from grubs and insects that he could gather. Upon his release, he spent a few more years in Vietnam before he was able to leave with his family.
Old 05-26-2018, 05:25 PM
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my grandfather was a marine on guadelcanal. he never spoke of it. would completely ignore any attempt to engage in any conversation about his expereience i have read enough about that battle to understand why. my wifes great uncle walked in the bataan death march. he also never said a word about it. both men were incredible people, but wanted nothing to do with rehashing their experience. a man i worked for 30 years ago was one of the first navy seals. he was a sniper in vietnam. serving his 3rd tour in-country he sent his mother a birthday gift. a necklace made of ears cut from victims of his excellence. he was sent home when his mother spoke to the navy about her gift. served as a bodyguard for a general the rest of his tour. one of the nicest people i ever met in my life. but being 30 years his juniour 50 pounds heavier than him and much stronger physically.. there ain't no way i would have ever wanted to go toe to toe with that man. all hail the heroes

Last edited by crossbones1; 05-26-2018 at 05:27 PM. Reason: additiona comment
Old 05-26-2018, 07:01 PM
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👆 Sorry buddy but that Navy Seal story reeks of BS. Not your fault but you might want to fact check that dude.
Old 05-26-2018, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by dsawyer8419 View Post
👆 Sorry buddy but that Navy Seal story reeks of BS. Not your fault but you might want to fact check that dude.
i wouldn't know how to fact check something like that. i wasnt there obviously and only believed what i was told. i'm no historian but from what i have read over time the story seems plausible. i gain nothing from relaying information i was given. even so, after so many atrocities committed by all sides in so many wars what would make you think such circumstances are implausible? i absolutely do not want what i wrote to have any affect on this thread so feel free to pm.
Old 05-26-2018, 08:06 PM
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Yeah I don’t want to take away from the thread at all either. I’ve just seen people tell that ear story and that is a dead give away that they are full of it. The SEALs have been around since WWII if he was one he would know that.... and if he’s in the Navy why would he be guarding a general? I’d bet money he was never a SEAL.

Did the other two gentlemen you mention tell war stories like that?
Old 05-26-2018, 08:17 PM
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I know a POW. I see him quite often, and I’ll hold my tongue on the Ear story.
Old 05-26-2018, 08:32 PM
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I used to work with one. Helo pilot shot down in Vietnam. The creases in his forehead told the story. I consider him a winner even though he got captured.
Old 05-26-2018, 09:09 PM
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I never knew him but my niece's husband said his grandfather was a pow in wwii. His last name was Gatzman. When the Germans saw what his name was they told him he was fighting on the wrong side. He told them to go to hell.
Old 05-26-2018, 09:28 PM
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I went to England for some of my medical school. This was 1976.

The "Prof" was a famous nephrologist in the UK. He was a wonderful interesting guy.
As a recently qualified physician he was sent to Singapore, and within two weeks was captured by the Japanese. He was moved around by the Japanese to various labor camps and somehow survived the war.
He became quite the expert on malnutrition. Especially vitamin deficiencies. The Japanese horribly mistreated and overworked the Brit's, Aussies, and eventually the US troops. He reported that they treated them like animals. He had no resources to take care of his fellow POW's, only his knowledge. Only a few of his original unit survived.

He returned to England and worked his way up to become one of the top Nephrologists in the UK. By the time I visited, he had his own ward (This in an NHS Hospital in London!) and had private patients from all over the world. He lived into his 90's. Professor Hugh de Warderner. Quite a guy.

Last edited by dssmith; 05-28-2018 at 08:58 AM.
Old 05-26-2018, 09:44 PM
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Had a cousin on moms side that was with the Dutch underground. He got caught and put in one of the consentration(sp) camps. Only thing that kept him alive was he was Dutch and spoke German. Never spoke a word about it but kept a diary. Think his children were going to have it translated. He made his kids watch a documentary on some of the camps and told them it was 10 times worse
Old 05-26-2018, 10:03 PM
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My Scoutmaster was in a Sherman that was hot by a Tiger. He got out alive, but was a POW for about a year. While on a canoe trip to the Boundary Waters, he told us a few stories around the campfire. Not everyone in the Sherman got out. He also said that he admires, and felt sorry for, the B-17 crews. He did not have the animosity towards the Germans that the folks in the Pacific had towards the Japanese.
Old 05-27-2018, 05:54 AM
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Over the years, I've had 3 clients who were Holocaust survivors. They have all passed on at this point. Had talks about their childhood, and journey after the war, but never discussed their experience during the war.
Old 05-27-2018, 06:28 AM
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My grandfather's brother was a navigator on a B17 and was shot down and captured by the Japanese. He was a prisoner for almost 4 years. He weighed 87 pounds when he was released. Also survived the Bataan death march. He wouldn't talk about what he endured, just would say it was more horrible than you could imagine. He and my grandpa were very close, they passed away within a week of each other.
Old 05-27-2018, 06:33 AM
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There is a guy in the Westca gym in Los Angeles
Old 05-27-2018, 07:15 AM
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Originally Posted by dsawyer8419 View Post
The SEALs have been around since WWII if he was one he would know that....
SEALs were formed in 62.
Amphibious Scouts and Raiders/Navy Combat Demolitions/OSS/UDT predate them.

uncle had a buddy who visited a few times that was a POW in Vietnam.

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