The War Came Home with Him: A Daughter's Memoir

The War Came Home with Him: A Daughter's Memoir

by Catherine Madison


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The War Came Home with Him: A Daughter's Memoir by Catherine Madison

During his years as a POW in North Korea, “Doc” Boysen endured hardships he never intended to pass along, especially to his family. Men who refused to eat starved; his children would clean their plates. Men who were weak died; his children would develop character. They would also learn to fear their father, the hero. In a memoir at once harrowing and painfully poignant, Catherine Madison tells the stories of two survivors of one man’s war: a father who withstood a prison camp’s unspeakable inhumanity and a daughter who withstood the residual cruelty that came home with him.

Doc Boysen died fifty years after his ordeal, his POW experience concealed to the end in a hidden cache of documents. In The War Came Home with Him, Madison pieces together the horrible tale these papers told—of a young captain in the U.S. Army Medical Corps captured in July 1950, beaten and forced to march without shoes or coat on icy trails through mountains to camps where North Korean and Chinese captors held him for more than three years. As the truth about her father’s past unfolds, Madison returns to a childhood troubled by his secret torment to consider, in a new light, the telling moments in their complex relationship.

Beginning at her father’s deathbed, with all her questions still unspoken, and ending with their final conversation, Madison’s dual memoir offers a powerful, intimate perspective on the suppressed grief and thwarted love that forever alter a family when a wounded soldier brings his war home.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780816698776
Publisher: University of Minnesota Press
Publication date: 09/01/2015
Pages: 232
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.60(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Journalist Catherine Madison was editor-in-chief of Utne Reader, senior editor at Adweek and Creativity Magazine, founding editor of American Advertising, and editor-in-chief of Format Magazine. She has written articles for many publications, including the Chicago Tribune, Star Tribune, and Minnesota Monthly.

Table of Contents


Yokohama, Japan, June 1950
Martinsburg, West Virginia, 1952
Pyongtaek, Korea, July 1950
San Antonio, Texas, 1954
Seoul, Korea, July 1950
San Antonio, Texas, 1957
Pyongyang, North Korea, July 1950
San Antonio, Texas, 1958
Manpo, North Korea, September 1950
En Route to Germany, 1959
The Cornfield, North Korea, October 1950
Bremerhaven, West Germany, 1960
Death March, North Korea, November 1950
Landstuhl, West Germany, 1962
By the Yalu River, North Korea, November 1950
Rockville, Maryland, 1963
Camp 7, North Korea, February 1951
San Antonio, Texas, 1964
Camp 2, P’anjung-ni, North Korea, November 1951
Atlanta, Georgia, 1965
Camp 2, P’anjung-ni, North Korea, January 1953
Atlanta, Georgia, 1966
Homeward Bound, September 1953
Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1970
Lawton, Oklahoma, January 1955
Athens, Georgia, 1995

Sources and Acknowledgments

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