Contributed by: Mavis Jean Howarth, on 2008-11-11
|Year of Birth||1897|
|Year of Death||1951|
|Place of Wartime Residence||Manchester, Lancashire|
From being the age of reason I remember my Father on each 21st March anniversary saying "this time XX years ago I woke up surrounded by Germans." I have his diary detailing his experiences as a prisoner each page mentions hunger, drinking erzatz coffee and (if lucky) eating black bread. Fellow prisoners from Russia who were without footwear and had rags wrapped around their feet = these same prisoners being denied Red Cross parcels (stolen by the guards) and the revenge taken on them by the Russians. This diary lists 'men who were with me in the cage' Sgt. Kirby - C.H. Martin - E.A.Bennett - J.Hampson = Bob Elliott...........
His recollections of being a POW and the hunger they all endured moved me to tears
November 1918 and the absolute wonder at realising the guards had left and the war had ended - walking for many miles before meeting "THE GOD-DAMS" each ex-pow having an American soldier to take care of them and being given as much to eat as they wished - my Dad's carer sitting opposite to him as he ate a full American breakfast and when asked "would you like anything else?" replied "may I have that again?" "God Dam it of course" said the American. They gave him a greatcoat which he had to sell to get back up north to Manchester on his return to England. ( He had a kitbag which I eventually ,in 1939 took to school full of pans etc for the WW2 war effort.)