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Wednesday, June 30, 2021

8 January 1943 - Cambria City Youth Prisoner of Japs, His Mother Learns

Clipping from The Johnstown Tribune - 8 January 1943. The tragic story of Edward J. Wisz from Cambria City.
I did some further research and found the following on:
Edward Wisz became a Prisoner of War when Bataan was surrendered to the Japanese on April 9, 1942, and took part in the death march. He was held as a POW at Camp O'Donnell and Cabanatuan. In October 1944, he was selected for transport to Japan, from the Philippines. His POW detachment was sent to the Port Area of Manila. The ship his detachment was scheduled to sail on was ready to depart, but the entire detachment had not arrived. Another POW detachment was not ready to sail but their ship was. The Japanese swapped POW detachments so the ship could sail.

1803 Prisoners of War were boarded onto the Arisan Maru on October 11, 1944. The ship sailed and anchored in a cove off Palawan Island. It returned to Manila ten days later where it sailed as part of a convoy. On October 24, 1944, late in the day, the ship was in the Bashi Channel of the South China Sea. The POWs, on deck preparing dinner, watched the Japanese run to the bow of the ship a torpedo past in front of the ship. Moments later, the guards ran to the stern as another torpedo passed behind the ship. The ship shook and came to a stop. It had been hit by two torpedoes amidships. The POWs were forced back into the holds and the Japanese covered the hatch openings with their covers. They then abandoned ship.

After the Japanese were gone the POWs climbed onto the deck. Most had survived the attack. Those POWs who could not swim raided the food lockers. They wanted to die with full stomachs. For two hours, the ship got lower and lower in the water. At some point, it broke in two. POWs took to the water on anything that floated. Some swam to nearby Japanese ships, but they were pushed away by Japanese sailors with poles. Five men found an abandoned lifeboat that had no oars. During the night, they heard the cries for help which faded away until there was silence. Only nine men survived the sinking. Eight survived to the end of the war.

Cpl. Wisz is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.



Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Assorted Ads

Zimmerman Stables, John Heilmann, Palace Steam Laundry and William Zipf - Baker.

Messenger Street

Messenger Street

Friday, June 25, 2021

'77 Flood

Palmer Avenue - '77. From bricks to other junk - some of this stuff is still stuck deep down in my yard.

Woolen Mills

John Ludwig & Sons - Woolen Mills - Ebensburg

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Monday, June 7, 2021

Friday, June 4, 2021

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

High Above

Johns Street Bridge

St. Casimir - Cambria City

Eleanor Kisha Donovan sent in this great shot of the altar at old St. Casimir Church - Cambria City.