5:08 | Bill Adair was suffering from the effects of a concussion when the battle for the Philippines came to an end for him. Along with thousands of others, he was forced to surrender and was facing the prospect of joining what would become known as the Bataan Death March. Then fate intervened in the form of an ambulance without a driver. Part 1 of 2.
Keywords : Bill Adair Philippines artillery fire Japanese captured surrender Bataan Death March ambulance doctor
War in the Pacific was looming, so the Army sent advisors, including Bill Adair, to the Philippines to help train their troops. When he got there, he found primitive conditions, very little equipment and uneducated farm boys for recruits.
Advisor Bill Adair was in the Philippines on a mission to train their army recruits. He was also mess officer and, shortly after the Japanese began their invasion, he left camp in a truck to get food. Suddenly he heard the riveting sound of a mortar shell on its way.
Bill Adair may have been the luckiest man in the Bataan Death march. With a commandeered ambulance full of casualties, he threaded his way through the ordeal thanks to luck and guile. At the end, though, there was a camp waiting for him just like all the rest. Part 2 of 2.
It was a struggle to survive a Japanese prison camp, but after liberation, Bill Adair faced a different kind of dilemma. Would he survive his first meal? He did and then he used his wits to secure passage on a plane instead of the much slower trip home on a ship.