Captured: The Forgotten Men of Guam

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9781612511146: Captured: The Forgotten Men of Guam

In the years before the outbreak of the war in the Pacific, Guam was a paradise for the Navy, Marine and civilian employees of Pan American Airways, who found themselves stationed on the island. However their apprehension about the fate of the island increased as they anticipated a Japanese attack in the fall of 1941. Shortly after attack on Pearl Harbor, Guam was bombed and the Japanese invasion soon followed. Since Guam was not heavily fortified it soon fell to the invading Japanese.

In the takeover of the island, the Japanese practiced a swift brutality against the captive Americans as well as native population, and then immediately removed the American military and civilian personnel to Japan. Only a lucky few escaped, including five Navy nurses and dependent Ruby Hellmers and her baby Charlene, who were transported back to America aboard the Swedish ship Gripsholm in mid-1942.

In Captured, Mansell tells the story of the captives from Guam, whose story until now has largely been forgotten. Drawing upon interviews with survivors, diaries and archival records, Mansell documents the movements of American military and civilian men as they went from one Japanese POW camp to another, slowly starving as they performed slave labor for Japanese companies. Meanwhile, he describes the brutal horrors suffered by Guamian natives during Japan's occupation of the island, especially as the Japanese prepared for American forces to re-take this U.S. possession in 1945.

Moving stories of liberation, transportation home, and the aftermath of these horrific experiences are narrated as the book draws to a close. Mansell concludes that America's lack of military preparation, disbelief in Japan's ambitions in the Pacific, and focus on Europe all contributed to the captivity of more than three years of suffering for the forgotten Americans from Guam as the Pacific War raged around them.

Captured was completed by historian Linda Goetz Holmes after the death of Roger Mansell.

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From the Inside Flap:

Prior to the outbreak of the Pacific War, Guam was a paradise for U.S. military and civilian employees stationed on the island. Shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor, however, the Japanese invaded the tiny island, captured the Americans, and shipped them to Japan. Drawing on interviews with survivors, diaries, and archival records, Roger Mansell documents the mostly unknown story of these American POWs. The men endured horrific hardships, many of which are chronicled in this book for the first time. Also included are moving stories of their liberation, transportation home, and the aftermath of their ordeal.

About the Author:

Roger Mansell was born in 1935 in Brooklyn, New York. After graduating from Mepham Highschool in Wantaugh, NY, he attended Brown University. Commissioned in the U.S. Army Artillery, he was stationed in Korea then at Fort Bliss, Texas. Having completed his military sevice, in 1962, he moved to California and a successful business career. It was to be the deep impression made upon him by an employee who, as a child, had been a prisoner under the Japanese during WWII, that set him on a course to discover more about the war.. When he met a veteran who had been taken prisoner by the Japanese on Guam, Mansell realized that many of the ex POWs, now elderly, had never told anyone about their experiences in what was a crucially important part of the history of the war in the Pacific.

After he retired from a career in business in the 1990s, he began researching the allied POWs of the Japanese, a gruesome story that had been largely buried in inaccessible archives. Over more than twenty years, he made multiple and extended visits to the National Archives Modern Military Records in College Park, MD, and to the Hoover Institution Library and Archives, as well as military historical centers, scanning and photographing thousands of documents that had never before been been centralized or complied.

Since the beginning of Mansell's project, his chief goal was to compile a database of more than 100,000 records to document what happened to every Allied soldier who was captured by Japanese forces during the war. Approximately 90 percent completed at the time of his death in 2010, this vast database contains information on when soldiers were captured, where they were interned, and whether they died or were repatriated at the end of the war, as well as the conditions of their captivity.

He founded the Center for Research Allied POWs Under the Japanese which posted the research on its website, www.mansell.com. That website has been turned over his colleague, Wes Injerd.

He turned his retirement into a full-time job not only undertaking research and elaborating the website, but assisting the hundreds of people who came to his website looking for information about what had happened to friends, fathers, grandfathers, and others. As one result of his research, Mansell has helped several families locate the remains of soldiers who were missing in action during the war; he has also frequently been consulted by researchers around the world seeking information about individual soldiers or the camps in which they were interned.

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Book Description Naval Institute Press, United States, 2012. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In the years before the outbreak of the war in the Pacific, Guam was a paradise for the Navy, Marine and civilian employees of Pan American Airways, who found themselves stationed on the island. However their apprehension about the fate of the island increased as they anticipated a Japanese attack in the fall of 1941. Shortly after attack on Pearl Harbor, Guam was bombed and the Japanese invasion soon followed. Since Guam was not heavily fortified it soon fell to the invading Japanese. In the takeover of the island, the Japanese practiced a swift brutality against the captive Americans as well as native population, and then immediately removed the American military and civilian personnel to Japan. Only a lucky few escaped, including five Navy nurses and dependent Ruby Hellmers and her baby Charlene, who were transported back to America aboard the Swedish ship Gripsholm in mid-1942. In Captured, Mansell tells the story of the captives from Guam, whose story until now has largely been forgotten. Drawing upon interviews with survivors, diaries and archival records, Mansell documents the movements of American military and civilian men as they went from one Japanese POW camp to another, slowly starving as they performed slave labor for Japanese companies. Meanwhile, he describes the brutal horrors suffered by Guamian natives during Japan s occupation of the island, especially as the Japanese prepared for American forces to re-take this U.S. possession in 1945. Moving stories of liberation, transportation home, and the aftermath of these horrific experiences are narrated as the book draws to a close. Mansell concludes that America s lack of military preparation, disbelief in Japan s ambitions in the Pacific, and focus on Europe all contributed to the captivity of more than three years of suffering for the forgotten Americans from Guam as the Pacific War raged around them. Captured was completed by historian Linda Goetz Holmes after the death of Roger Mansell. Bookseller Inventory # AAN9781612511146

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Book Description Naval Institute Press, United States, 2012. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In the years before the outbreak of the war in the Pacific, Guam was a paradise for the Navy, Marine and civilian employees of Pan American Airways, who found themselves stationed on the island. However their apprehension about the fate of the island increased as they anticipated a Japanese attack in the fall of 1941. Shortly after attack on Pearl Harbor, Guam was bombed and the Japanese invasion soon followed. Since Guam was not heavily fortified it soon fell to the invading Japanese. In the takeover of the island, the Japanese practiced a swift brutality against the captive Americans as well as native population, and then immediately removed the American military and civilian personnel to Japan. Only a lucky few escaped, including five Navy nurses and dependent Ruby Hellmers and her baby Charlene, who were transported back to America aboard the Swedish ship Gripsholm in mid-1942. In Captured, Mansell tells the story of the captives from Guam, whose story until now has largely been forgotten. Drawing upon interviews with survivors, diaries and archival records, Mansell documents the movements of American military and civilian men as they went from one Japanese POW camp to another, slowly starving as they performed slave labor for Japanese companies. Meanwhile, he describes the brutal horrors suffered by Guamian natives during Japan s occupation of the island, especially as the Japanese prepared for American forces to re-take this U.S. possession in 1945. Moving stories of liberation, transportation home, and the aftermath of these horrific experiences are narrated as the book draws to a close. Mansell concludes that America s lack of military preparation, disbelief in Japan s ambitions in the Pacific, and focus on Europe all contributed to the captivity of more than three years of suffering for the forgotten Americans from Guam as the Pacific War raged around them. Captured was completed by historian Linda Goetz Holmes after the death of Roger Mansell. Bookseller Inventory # AAN9781612511146

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