I arrived in Corpus Christi on the train from Knox County, Texas. I had just joined the army a few weeks ago. We unloaded from the train cars and into buses. The buses carried us down the shipping docks. There were 2000 of us new recruits. We were being sent to Guam for basic training. The officers told us that we would be joining the World War II battle against Japan. The jungles of Guam would be a more realistic training since we would be fighting in South East Asia.
We boarded a ship and headed to Guam. After a long travel across rough seas, we were finally rejoicing to see land. It took several hours to unload the 2000 new army recruits. The jungle seemed quite and eerie. Just as the officers started to give us orders, several hundred Japanese soldiers appeared from the jungle with rifles pointed at us.
Just hours before we arrived the Japanese had captured the island. We were now prisoners of war. This would be a difficult time for young men with no training. We joined other prisoners in being loaded onto Japanese cargo ships. The cargo hulls packed as tightly as possible. It was hard to breath and there was only standing room. All of us POW's were carried to Japan to work hard labor.
We spent the rest of the war in a POW camp working 14 hours a day in the shipyard. You will never know the relief I felt when an American plane flew over the shipyard and dropped supplies to us. I immediately realized the war was over. All of the POW's rushed over to the dropped supplies. The first thing I saw was a can of peaches that had busted open. There laid a half of a peach on the rock. I sat down and ate the peaches off the ground. In the coming weeks, we were rescued and taken back to America.