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Joining the Winnipeg Grenadiers

Joining the Winnipeg Grenadiers

After months of training with Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, Mr. Flegg describes jumping at the chance to reinforce the Winnipeg Grenadiers, thinking they are heading out for Europe. However, the troop train heads west.

Impressions of Hong Kong

Impressions of Hong Kong

Mr. Flegg describes the overcrowding in Hong Kong, but still being able to enjoy the wine, women and song. He describes the Canadian provosts as being very understanding when men became drunk or unruly.

Camp life and personal batmen

Camp life and personal batmen

Mr. Flegg describes the sleeping facilities in his camp, and being awakened every morning by a Chinese man who was giving him a shave in bed. His clothing and boots were also looked after by this man for a modest payment.

Pillboxes Were Death Traps

Pillboxes Were Death Traps

Mr. Flegg talks about pillboxes being deathtraps. Under enemy fire, he rescues two wounded men from a pillbox which had had a Molotov cocktail dropped down the ventilator.

Close Quarter Fighting and Fear of Reprisal

Close Quarter Fighting and Fear of Reprisal

Mr. Flegg gives a vivid account of the close quarter fighting at the Aberdeen Reservoir. He describes fatigue and hunger, and destroying a cache of liquor because of a fear of Japanese brutality should they find it and get drunk.

Desperate Thirst

Desperate Thirst

Mr. Flegg describes being provided water by their Japanese captors. It is delivered in an unwashed gasoline drum. Despite the contamination, the men are so thirsty, they drink it anyway.

Witnessing “The Horror”

Witnessing “The Horror”

Now a POW, Mr. Flegg experiences what he describes as the horror for the first time. From inside the building where he is held captive, he helplessly listens to Chinese women being raped and murdered by the Japanese.

Moving A Mountain

Moving A Mountain

Mr. Flegg gives a brief description of the work done at Kai-Tek Airport.

Dr. Reid was a Saint!

Dr. Reid was a Saint!

Mr. Flegg credits their regimental doctor, Dr. Reid, with helping many of the men through their prison ordeal. Despite having no medical supplies, his kind and sympathetic treatment of the inmates makes him a saint in Mr. Flegg's opinion.

Malaria and Dysentery

Malaria and Dysentery

Mr. Flegg describes praying to die during his worst episodes of malaria. Also a victim of dysentery, he describes the disgusting living conditions in the isolation ward.

Beriberi

Beriberi

Beriberi was another serious condition afflicting the POW’s at Sham Shui Po. There were two types; dry and wet. Mr. Flegg describes how the dry beriberi, or electric feet, made grown men cry. He contracted the wet variety, which caused massive fluid retention in different parts of the body. Mr. Flegg discusses the consequences of this edema.

Parasites And Cockroaches

Parasites And Cockroaches

Mr. Flegg describes crabs, lice, bedbugs and cockroaches, which were often roasted and eaten, as being persistent pests in the POW camps in Hong Kong.

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