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   Interview with Phil Bradley

JT  Talk about the research process for the book.


PB  The veteran interviews are vital. The vets are dying out fast, and they will take their stories with them. Also the current written background is very scarce and lacks detail.

  Each vet I talk to gives me a new perspective on the battle, from the artilleryman who called down the vital support fire to the stretcher bearer who tried to save his dying mates as a Japanese gun opened up on them at point blank range and of course to the front line infantryman who hauled himself up the near vertical ridge face with Jap grenades rolling down past him.

  It makes one very humble when they tell you things they have not talked about for over 50 years and then say how pleased they are that someone will finally tell their story and that perhaps they won't sleep that coming night because the memories can be very painful.

  They tell you how the official histories got it all wrong and that no one can ever comprehend what it was like. When I tell them I climbed the ridge they are amazed but they know I can relate to their own experiences.

  It will be their story, not mine. There will also be photos and probably a chapter in the book about Shaggy Ridge today.

mortars
Grenades and mortars discovered

 

shells and helmet
Shells and helmet

 

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