Archive for August, 2012

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Lacking eight days, I was in Camp No. 3 for four months. I have no way of knowing how many P.O.W.’s died of either starvation or of disease, but to my knowledge, the only four men shot were the ones I mentioned earlier. This does not mean that the Japs let up on us. Someone was always getting beat up for no good reason at all. The Japs told us that we would never win the war, and that they were willing to fight a ten year war. We had no news in camp except rumors, but according to the Japs’ story, they must have sunk our total fleet five or six times while I was in this camp.

Forgotten Men

In a camp of nipa barracks,
Lost deep in the Philippines,
Are a bunch of forgotten warriors
With nothing left but dreams.

We’re fighting a greater battle now
Than the battle that we fought and lost.
It’s a battle against the elements;
A battle with life that cost.

But not it’s not how much you know,
Or how quick you hit the ditch.
It’s not the rank that you once held,
Or whether or not you’re rich.

No one cares who you know back home,
Or what kind of life you led.
It’s just how long you can stick it out
That governs your lot instead.

This battle we’re fighting at present
Is a battle against flies and diseases.
And with decent living conditions,
We’d win this fight with ease.

It’s rice for breakfast, noon and night,
And rain most every day.
Then sleep on bamboo slats at night,
With no better place to lay.

We eat from most any old tin can
We’re lucky enough to get.
And the medical supplies we ought to have,
We haven’t seen as yet.

Yes, we’re the forgotten men of Corregidor,
Fighting the greatest battle yet.
Struggling for bare existence,
Through hunger and sickness and sweat.

Those of us who do come through,
Perhaps we can prove our worth
When we tell the strangest tale yet told
Of a veritable Hell on earth.

(Written by a fellow prisoner)

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[2]

Every one who was in camp will remember the next fellow whose name I shall not mention. He was one of the biggest operators in camp by bribe or other means. He always managed to get on the supply detail that went into Cabanatuan and always came back as if he had been to the super market, and he had drugs. The bad thing was that he sold these products at such a high price, when there were men dying whose lives he could have saved if he had given them some of the food and medicine that he had. This man had a black chow dog who ate better than any one in camp. If a person didn’t have the price to pay for the food, he would give it to his dog.