Sketch by Jack Chalker

Introduction

This is the true story of my experiences as a corporal in the Royal Norfolk Regiment in World War II.

My trip all round the world at the Government´s expense, only to suffer in my travels, three and a half years of degradation, hunger, malnutrition, loss of index finger, being sunk on a Japanese P.O.W ship, not only once by American aircraft and after being recaptured a second time by an American submarine and having to dispose of a Jap guard, so that I could survive.

Sixteen years after arriving home, reading an article in one of the Sunday newspapers about a Norfolk fighting a Jap in the water, somewhere in the South China sea, contacting the newspaper and telling them the Norfolk was me and meeting up with the story teller in Newcastle. His story won him one hundred pounds.

My face, sixteen years previous must have been imprinted on his mind. When he saw me fight this Jap I must have wighed around eight stones. It just shows you what one can do when fighting for his life.

I also had the unique experience of serving under three flags, British, American and Japanese and being held a P.O.W. in a camp in Japan, a few miles from where the second atom bomb was dropped on Nagasaki and experiencing the journey through this city, three weeks after, to witness the devastation one bomb can cause.

Jack Symon