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Death and Deprivation on the forgotten Sumatra Railway

James H Banton
ARRSE Rating
4 Mushroom Heads
An autobiography of the experiences of Jim Banton, who joined the RAF on the outbreak of WW2 He was posted to the far East and managed to escape from the Japanese as he was defending Kalijati airfield but he was later captured on the island of Java and put to work as slave labour on the Sumatran railway. Enduring on boiled rice, insects and unripe banana stew, his only possession a photo of his wife. The railway was completed on 15th August (VJ day) but was never used.

All in all a very well written and complete account of a life well lived. There are very stark comparisons from peace to war to POW to peace again and rehabilitation. A good read.

Jim Banton passed away on 28th Feb 2003.
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