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"My mental attitude was better than other POWs who were sick with malaria and dysentery." (Video Interview)

   William S. Allen
Image of William S. Allen
William Allen
War: World War II, 1939-1946
Branch: Army
Unit: Company B, 194th Tank Battalion
Service Location: St. Joseph, Missouri; Fort Lewis, Washington; Philippines
Highest Rank: Staff Sergeant
POW: Yes
Place of Birth: Union Star, MO
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Army Sergeant William Allen had a front-row seat for America's entry into World War II. He was stationed at Clark Field in the Philippines when Japanese forces attacked at the same time they were hitting Pearl Harbor. Four months later, U.S. forces on the islands had to surrender to the Japanese, and Allen joined thousands of GIs and Filipinos on the Bataan Death March. Miraculously avoiding illness, Allen kept his spirits up, volunteering for work details in order to get better rations. He survived transport to Japan in one of the notorious hell ships, and war's end found him working in railroad yards north of Tokyo.

Interview (Video)
»Interview Highlights  (5 clips)
»Complete Interview  (83 min.)
»Photo Album (1 photo)
More like this
»POWs in Japan
 Video (Interview Excerpts) (5 items)
Japanese attitude toward those who surrendered. (02:18) Avoiding disease; burying the dead. (04:07) Fighting off the Japanese Invasion. (05:30)
Maintaining physical and mental health. (05:17) His parents' knowledge of his status; meeting his future wife. (02:40) 
Home » William S. Allen
  The Library of Congress
  May 29, 2007
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