Jack D. Smith
...he was a USS Houston and Burma death rail road survivor.
Now my ship was sinking and I had no place to go,
the japs had their searchlights on and the shells were coming in a steady flow.
We dove in the ocean in the middle of the night;
there was nothing we could take to continue the fight.
I had taken my shoes off as I started for the shore;
it would be three and one half years before my feet got more.
Most of us were young and in our teens,
and when the japs caught me all I had on was blue jeans.
I found a pig bristle tooth brush when we went through Singapore,
And a little bent up teapot I learned to adore.
If there was a fire and water I could make it safe to drink
And drinking unboiled water was the same as not to think
Now you want to talk of illness that in this country you will never see,
we have a lot of videos that we will send to thee.
And even the pictures they will show on the screen
will in no way match fully the sights we have seen.
Now when you call a hearing you call experts from all around,
they stand up and tell you that these conditions were no where to be found.
I would suggest that the next time you call some of us low enlisted men,
we were the one's the Jap's started on when the beatings would begin
Now there was never a time in any prison camp I was in,
that I saw any American I would not be proud to call my friend.
And I don't believe our citizens will really ever know
how many bled and died to save the country, as we know.
Now I would not ask or volunteer to be where I have been,
but I have had the privilege of seeing what makes America win.
You need the money and the material that our country can provide,
but you have to have those citizens that will give their lives with pride.