BBC News

WWII photo held key to silent generation's hidden trauma

Dale Maharidge grew up knowing that his father's rage and violent outbursts stemmed from his experience as a Marine fighting in World War II, but the former Sgt Steve Maharidge never spoke to his son about what troubled him.

The only clue was a photograph he always kept nearby - a young Sgt Maharidge with another US Marine.

When his father died in 2000, Dale Maharidge set out to discover the identity of the man in the picture - and the dark secrets the photograph held.

Over the next 12 years, Maharidge tracked down 29 survivors of Love Company who fought with his father in the Pacific. Half a century after World War II, many of the men, now in their 70s and 80s, spoke out for the first time.

Bringing Mulligan Home: The Other Side of the Good War, helps explain why the silent generation stayed silent for so long - and why the war's horrors still haunt them.

Produced by the BBC's Ashley Semler, Chuck Tayman and Bill McKenna

Archive video courtesy of British Pathe