Japanese POW camp inmates held as toddlers in 1941 recall life

japanese pow camp inmates held as toddlers in 1941 recall life - Japanese POW camp inmates held as toddlers in 1941 recall life

Two men who were incarcerated in a Japanese prisoner of war camp, at the age of two, on Christmas Eve in 1941 have spoken publicly for the first time about their experiences, 75 years after their release.

Derek Bird and Robert Macmillan were visiting the Philippines with their mothers when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, dragging the US into the war.

It also led to people being barred from leaving Hong Kong, where their fathers were working.

For Derek, of Marlborough, Wiltshire, and Robert, from Nailsworth, Gloucestershire and their mothers, it was the start of more than three years of being held prisoner in terrible conditions.

They were eventually liberated by the Americans, “having eaten nothing sweet for three-and-a-half years” and weighing the same as they did when they were first captured.

Video Journalist: Kathryn Emerson.

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