(Remembering Today) September 6th 1945, repatriation day for those POWs interned on Formosa. The previous day, the destroyers USS Kretchmer and USS Thomas J Gary had made their way through the minefield at Keelung harbour in northern Formosa (Taiwan). All the POWs had been bought from various camps on the island to a transit camp near Taipei, and the evacuation had commenced. The two destroyers had taken the men out into the bay where the aircraft carriers USS Block Island and USS Santee were at anchor awaiting them. It proved to be a hazardous task transferring the men who were in extremely weak condition, and the majority were near skeletons weighing less than 5 stone. On September 6th, two more destroyers joined the operation, USS Finch and USS Brister, and by midday all but 98 POWs had been safely loaded aboard their freedom ships. The 98 men plus medics were considered to ill to travel and were to follow on the New Zealand Hospital Ship Maunganui a few days later. Many of the crew are reported as being in tears at seeing the condition of the men with quotes such as “Geez, what have the bastards done to you”, All six ships then sailed for Manila, and the care the men received from the crews during the voyage is ingrained in their memories and history books. From Manila the journey home was varied, with many going Bombay-Suez, other going Hawaii-Vancouver-(train) New York, or Hawaii-San Francisco-(train) New York, and some via Australia or New Zealand. September 6th, a day the men will never forget. Thanks Uncle Sams Boys. . . . . . .