It was my 8th-grade history teacher, Mr. Danhausen, who started me on my life-long obsession with World War II.
It was my friend, Anthony Garrett, who provided me with a copy of his grandfather's journal.

Elwood Llewellin Garrett was an American businessman in Manila at the time of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
This is his story, as he recorded it, of living under Japanese rule in an enemy-occupied foreign land.

April 24, 1942

There seems to be a great wave of optimism lately along the lines of rumors. Planes continue to bomb Japan and our forces are reportedly moving up from Australia, sweeping the Japs as they roll along. It is also rumored that our forces have landed on the southern tip of Luzon at a town named Legaspi. All last night we could hear a heavy movement of tanks and trucks moving northward, which according to the optimists is Japs retreating from the south. It does add up and maybe there is something to it. Who knows?

Here's a rich one! After being in camp for over three and one half months, yesterday I met a man by the name of Calvert, who received a letter from his wife in San Francisco on the last clipper to come to these parts, telling him all about meeting you and your mother and you coming out here. We had quite a little chat comparing notes, etc; and both look forward to having a big "bust" when you and his wife do come out here. The fact that both you and his wife just missed by bare inches, in getting caught in this mess gave us much in common to be grateful for. Every time I think how close you came to being caught, cold chills run up and down my spine. Mr. Calvert seems to be a very fine chap and a regular fellow. Will undoubtedly see more of him from now on. He is from San Francisco also so we get along O.K.

It is surprising, that although we are all cooped up here together, weeks go by with out seeing certain ones we know. Just this morning I met a fellow who I thought had been out on a pass as I had not seen him for some time, but he had been here all the time, same as I, and wondered whether I had been out. I have been thinking of trying to get out for a day to get some money and incidently a "snoot-full," but passes are hard to get so am not planning on it too keenly. Havn't had a drink in almost four months so guess I can get along without it for a little while longer.

No comments:

Post a Comment

There was an error in this gadget