Terry The Inspiring Story of a Little Girl’s Survival as a POW during WW11 Reviewed By June Maffin of
June Maffin

Reviewer June Maffin:Living on an island in British Columbia, Canada, Dr. Maffin is a neophyte organic gardener, eclectic reader, ordained minister (Anglican/Episcopal priest) and creative spirituality writer/photographer with a deep zest for life. Previously, she has been grief counselor, broadcaster, teacher, journalist, television host, chaplain and spiritual director with an earned doctorate in Pastoral Care (medical ethics i.e. euthanasia focus). Presently an educator, freelance editor, blogger, and published author of three books, her most recent (Soulistry-Artistry of the Soul: Creative Ways to Nurture your Spirituality) has been published in e-book as well as paperback format and a preview can be viewed on YouTube videos. Founder of Soulistry™ she continues to lead a variety of workshops and retreats connecting spirituality with creativity and delights in a spirituality of play. You can find out more about June by clicking on her Web Site.

By June Maffin
Published on January 25, 2013

Author: Terry Wadsworth Warne
ISBN: 978-1-4327-8973-2

Author: Terry Wadsworth Warne
ISBN: 978-1-4327-8973-2

Imagine yourself as a seven year old American girl living a life surrounded by love, security and joy on the island of Mindanao in the Philippines where your father has been sent to start up a pineapple plantation for the Del Monte company.  Your life consists of playing with friends and your special doll Louise.  You’re having a wonderful childhood and have little knowledge of politics or global concerns until …

Until the bombing of Pearl Harbour on December 7, 1941 when, within hours of that secret attack, a similar assault is launched by the Japanese military on the Philippine islands with the intention of overtaking the American Protectorate that kept families like yours safe from the Japanese who wanted complete control over the seaways surrounding the Philippine islands.

Life abruptly changes.  You and your parents abandon your home in the security of the Del Monte compound and flee to the dense mountain jungle to hide from the Japanese army where you live in fear of being captured, for almost a year.

This is the story of little Terry who, now eight years old, finds herself and her parents in a series of Japanese prisoner of war camps dealing with starvation, malnutrition, intestinal complications, serious infections, high fevers, ulcers on their bodies, and exhausting and frightening trips in the dirty holds of Japanese freighters dodging US submarines and planes.

Survival in the POW camps goes from bad to worse.  After picking out the weevils, bugs and foreign matter from the vegetable peelings and weeds Terry manages to steal, her caloric intake drops from 800 to 600 calories a day.  In the shelling of Santo Tomas, she and her parents huddle together for sixteen hours to protect one another from the flying concrete and shrapnel.  In transfer after transfer from one POW location to another, young Terry comes to experience war, imprisonment, poverty, hunger, malnutrition, illness, beheadings and unrelenting fear.  There was always the very real threat that when they were finally liberated, they would all be killed because the Japanese wanted to leave no evidence. 
When Terry is eleven, she and the others are finally are liberated and returned to the United States, only now she is twenty pounds lighter than before the war began three years earlier.

Terry Wadsworth Warne’s autobiography is a powerful reminder of philosopher and poet George Santayana’s words “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”  This story, told through the eyes, mind and heart of a child, is a personal portrayal of a tragic historical reality.  Had the book been screened with an intense edit, this captivating and terrifying story about growing up in an ugly time in history under an evil regime would have had more of an impact. However, it is a book that deserves to be included in school libraries and on church shelves for it provides a credible and poignant warning to humanity and is also a story of the spirit of forgiveness.  

In spite of the ill treatment she and her parents received under the hands of the Japanese, because of a strong personal faith in God's grace and the words of Shakespeare “What e’er thou art, act well thy part," the spirit of forgiveness was and is present today in the heart of author Terry Wadsworth.

Follow Here To Purchase Terry: The Inspiring Story of a Little Girl's Survival as a POW During WWII

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