During World War II, thousands of American servicemen were taken prisoner by the Axis powers. They were beaten and tortured; over half never reached home again. Of those who did, many never fully recovered from what they saw, what they lived through, and the feelings that so racked their lives. Almost all have or had a drinking problem. Some suffer such consistently extreme flashbacks that they are forced to use sleeping medication just to help them make it through the night. The ten interviews included in this work were chosen from dozens of contact POW accounts. Theirs are stories of hardship, pain, survival, and at times, enlightenment. From the introduction to Mario Garbin's interview: Mario was one of the more fortunate POWs who put to use in his later life what he learned from his incarceration. At the present, he is retired from over twenty-six years of service with the Chrysler corporation...Although powerful and charismatic, he still cried uncontrollably during one portion of the interview and had to pause several times to keep his composure in other portions. Hidden in the tales of these men is a message we can all relate to, making this book a must read t only for the ex-POW or World War II history buff, but for any reader who cares about life and freedom.
TOM BIRD is an author and teacher. He co-wrote Willie Stargell: An Autobiography and Knuckleballs with Phil Niekro. His work has also appeared in many magazines.