pd posted:Trainlover160 posted:
Sorry everyone. I thought my original post from my phone would have come out here. My brother found 4-5 pictures on the the internet about a year ago with our father in them, and this was one of them. He was a Prisoner of War, WWII, in the Philippines for 3-1/2 years, Battle of Batan. We are not sure if it was taken right before, during, or after this time. The pic also included all last names. My Dad is the one on the middle of the steps. I am also not sure what loco it is, I just knew I had to have this for my train room.
Our daughter is a Graphic Designer, and she tried to produce the pic with the names at the bottom as I requested, however, to do this would have done some head chopping at the top, so that was out.
When he was around 14 or 15, he worked for UP on the Pullman Car out of Omaha, and always loved trains. I wish he was here to enjoy my trains. I know he would loved the layout out we are trying to build. The trains were just not something my wife and I could not afford in the earlier years of marriage, and raising two daughters.
It's been 75 years since those guys endured what surely must have been hell-on-earth. They are not forgotten.
The picture was almost certainly taken before he was captured. The Japanese believed that any prisoners had lost their honor and were no better than dogs or slaves. In addition, the Japanese chose their most cruel and sadistic officers to run the forced labor camps. Prisoners would have been beaten regularly, and tortured/starved/worked to death. It was indeed hellish.
The fellows in this picture are way too healthy, well dressed, and well fed to have had this picture taken while in captivity. It's an incredible testament to his strength and brains that he survived for three and one half years in this form of captivity.