Thank you to the Treasury Café and Restaurant for allowing us to sell our security wrist
bands. Please come along and purchase yours on…
VJ Day is a time for us to reflect and show gratitude to our survivors for their bravery,
dedication and sacrifice, to those who never returned, but to also remember that WW2 did
not end on May 8th.
Thousands of British and Allied Forces, Civilian Men, Women and Children were still fighting or imprisoned in the Far East, many died on “hell ships”, locked below deck to suffer horrendous torture and die where they sat.
Our military had been fighting at the beginning of the war on land, sea and in the air right up until they were captured. Others were fighting in various parts of the Pacific Islands, Hong Kong, Java, Palembang Sumatra, Singapore and Malaya. It wasn’t all about Burma, as many believe this was the only campaign.
Thousands died in prison camps, from starvation, tropical diseases, subjected to brutal and
barbaric treatment on a daily basis. No reason was needed by the Japanese. Many were taken off to be shot, whipped with barbed wire, beaten with sticks or the butts of the riffles. Burials took place daily on open bonfires.
The high mortality rate of 55.6%, was so much higher than Europe and represents the real
truth of Jap methods and treatment.
The prisoners were made to work long hours doing heavy work with merely 350 grams of
rice, 150 grams if you were very sick.
Those who returned home, carried with them memories of mistreatment and loss, some of them particularly shocking.
The sacrifice of those who suffered and died for the Allied cause in Asia, remains today one
of the most honoured memories of the British Armed Forces. The largest British Empire and
Commonwealth military ever assembled, numbering over half a million.
Japan did not surrender until 14 August 1945, after the atomic bombs were dropped on
Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
The next day was celebrated as VJ Day by the families of the men in the Far East.
A memorial service will take place in the Minster Church of St. Andrew. Please be seated by
11:00. A celebration will follow.
More information on our website: www.vjday75plymouth.co.uk