By John Henry Poncio,Marlin Young
After surviving the brutal Bataan dying March in spring 1942, Louisiana local John Henry Poncio spent the rest of global warfare II as a eastern prisoner, first at Camp Cabanatuan within the Philippines and later at Hirohata in Japan. In these 3 and a part years, U.S. military Air Corps sergeant Poncio suffered serious beatings, hunger, illness, and emotional and mental abuse by the hands of his captors. even if, his resiliency, humorousness, and crafty helped him to persist and to get over the disturbing occasions with out rancor towards the japanese. In Girocho, he relates his reports as a POW with touching honesty, vividly describing the cruel stipulations he and his comrades continued in addition to the sometimes-funny clashes with eastern culture.
Girocho used to be a samurai who stole from the wealthy and gave to the terrible, a jap Robin Hood. Early on, Poncio used to be given this identify in jest by way of one of many felony guards, and it applicable him completely. in the course of his internment, he took half in an unlimited smuggling operation that introduced nutrients, funds, mail, and different offers into the POW camps; he said enemy troop activities to Filipino guerrillas and took part in acts of sabotage. He and the opposite prisoners labored jointly continuously to subvert the japanese warfare attempt even lower than the specter of loss of life, going as far as to bury dear calibration apparatus in rainy cement and construct abnormal gears for planes. To frustrate their captors and to stick alive, the yankee POWs built the process “going Asiatic” — protecting a clean expression in the course of interrogations and beatings and escaping mentally for a time. even though he and his fellow captives have been handled with cruelty through many, Poncio remembers the camaraderie of the prisoners and encounters with humane guards and type civilians, proving his notable reward for locating the optimistic within the such a lot dire of situations.
Girocho is an inspiring memoir, transcribed verbatim by way of Poncio’s spouse, Inez, from 9 hours of cassettes Poncio recorded a few years after the conflict. Marlin younger proven her uncle’s tales, put them in chronological order, and set them in the higher context of the conflict, making a compelling story of 1 soldier’s braveness, honor, and get to the bottom of to beat existence as a prisoner of struggle. Their booklet is a becoming tribute to the POWs within the Pacific, who fought of their particular means for the U.S. conflict attempt, their associates, and their very lives.
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Girocho: A GI's Story of Bataan and Beyond by John Henry Poncio,Marlin Young