Stephen Michael Mellnik

Stephen Michael Mellnik

(November 22, 1907 -- January 1, 1994) U.S. Army officer; captured on Corregidor, subsequently P.O.W. in various camps until his escape with nine others from Davao Penal Colony on April 4, 1943, the only successful P.O.W. escape in the Philippines. After a period with guerrillas, in July 9, 1943, transported to Australia by submarine.

6 June 1942

Led by Stubby, 1,500 PWs came from O’Donnell on 2 June. Three more groups of 1,500 each arrived on successive days. Few brought mosquito nets

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7 June 1942

Heavy rains make camp a quagmire. We dig drainage ditches for dysentery-ridden O’Donnell group. Paths to their latrines lined with feces each morning —men just

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13 June 1942

Japanese putting five-strand barbed wire fence around camp. Also building twenty-foot-high sentry towers every 200 yards. Few PWs have strength to climb fence, much less

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15 June 1942

Bataan medics establish “hospital” across road. They hold sick call and make diagnoses. They have no medicines other than gentian violet, which is specific for

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16 June 1942

By order of Mori, each PW belongs to a ten-man shooting squad! Squad rosters posted on barrack bulletin boards. If one man in squad escapes,

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29 June 1942

Buried fifty-two today. Three majors died this month. Camp is gloomy morgue. Dead men lie on streets until noon; Rutherford can’t find enough strong men

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