Captain Sir Tom Moore has told how he “wasn’t very scared” of the Japanese Imperial Army, despite carrying around a suicide pill in case he was captured.
The 100-year-old Second World War veteran remembered his comrades ahead of VJ Day on Saturday, which will mark 75 years since the surrender of Japan and the effective end of the century-defining conflict.
In an interview with the Radio Times, the NHS fundraising champion recalled his time serving in Burma (now Myanmar) and contracting dengue fever in the sweltering conditions.
He told the magazine: “I wasn’t very scared. Not really. At one stage we were given a pill that, well, it did you in completely.
“That was to swallow in case we were captured and forced to give up information.”
The Royal British Legion has announced plans to mark the 75th anniversary of VJ Day (Victory over Japan), to highlight the “forgotten history” of those who helped bring an end to the Second World War on August 15 1945.
Sir Tom told the Radio Times he did not give in to despair during his time in the Far East, adding: “In Burma I never thought of disaster. I always thought we would win and looked forward to the time when we would keep the flag flying in peace.”
The full story can be read on the Radio Times website at www.radiotimes.com