THE REPATRIATION BOARD
The doctor of the prison camp decided he was going to place me as a candidate for the repatriation board. This board consisted of three doctors: one was English, one was German, and one was Swedish. I would be given a ticket home if they classified me as a liability. A liability was defined as one who used resources that would detract the United States from the war effort,
Because I could walk a little bit, we were afraid that the board would not let me pass. It was necessary for me to put on quite an act in front of the board.
All the applicants were nude and seated in chairs. They would call your name and you would present yourself to tell why you thought you should go home. The English doctor would give his medical report and they would make their decision.
When they called my name I rose from the chair and hanging on to the chair I worked my way around to the table where the board members were seated. I acted as though I were completely paralyzed from the waist down on one side.
The English doctor reported that I needed immediate medical attention, more attention than he was capable of giving. He said that I should be in an American hospital, but even with the future operations, I would probably never be able to walk again without the use of a crutch.Back Next