We Survived War's Crucible: A True Story of Imprisonment and Rescue in World War II Philippines by Donald P Smith
WE SURVIVED WAR’S CRUCIBLE
A true Story of Imprisonment and Rescue
In World War II Philippines
A large pit is ready for the mass execution of 2,147 prisoners in the Los Baños concentration camp. At dawn, paratroopers of the 11th Airborne drop from the sky. Filipino guerillas overpower Japanese guards. During the night, fifty-four amphibious tractors have crossed the large lake, around Japanese lines. They arrive, and take all the prisoners to safety. It is one of the most perfectly executed rescues of World War II.
That is but the climax of the exciting story Stephen Smith tells, of his captivity in the Philippines, with his wife Viola, and teen age son Paul. It begins as he enters Manila Bay on a Coast Guard cutter, while bombs are dropping, and sunken ships are still burning. The family lives under house arrest by the Japanese Army in Manila for two and one half years. With no connections to banks in the U.S., Stephen must find enough money to buy food for 70 fellow missionary prisoners.
Daring young Paul, gets a big bang out of celebrating the fourth of July, right in front of his armed Japanese captors. A hardened Japanese veteran of Manchuria, China and Bataan, reveals his hidden humanity. While others are being beheaded in Fort Santiago, a Japanese guard risks his own life to spare the life of a Filipino friend.
At risk of his life, Stephen provides an American flag to a Filipipno guerilla for use in signaling American submarines.
In all this struggle, how can the Smiths find the physical, emotional and spiritual resources to survive the crucible of war? This book tells how.