MASON CITY, Iowa – Carroll Bogard is more than just a veteran of World War II, as a prisoner of war, his perspective of the war is one like none other.
Whether you stormed the beaches of Normandy or were captured behind enemy lines, everyone has their own story to tell about World War II.
70 years have passed since a photo of Carroll Bogard and his crew was taken on D-Day and while his memory of the photo may not be so clear, his mind will never let him forget the events that occurred shortly after.
“If I had to I could just about give you a narration in chronological order of everything that happened to me. From the time I bailed out, till I ended up being liberated,” said Bogard.
After abandoning his plane over enemy territory, Carroll was captured by the Germans and became a prisoner of war.
“There you were isolated and I managed to get the first food I had in about 8 1/2 days. The food was one piece of bread folded together with jam in it once a day. It was my food for five more days. I went from 155 pounds to 105 pounds,” said Bogard.
For more than 9 months, Carroll would spend 87 days walking 600 miles from one base to another.
Always fantasising about either escape or being liberated.
“Never once day or night, as long as your awake, it never left. Every chance, I wanted to watch to see if I could escape. Even though it never happened,” said Bogard.
That day would come on May 4, Carroll was freed.
While the experience of living through the barracks will stay with him forever, his attitude is why he believes he is still here today.
“Health-wise, attitude is important. The guys that had a good attitude and didn’t have their heads bowed down and growling and stuff were a lot better and fared better. They’re better today even though their 80 and 90 years old,” said Bogard.
After asking Carroll what he remembered the most, he says it was how little food humans can survive on.
He spent days eating whatever he could find and still managed to have a positive attitude through it all.
Bogard and his fellow veterans will be heading to Des Moines tomorrow morning.
They will be making the trip to pay tribute to the fallen soldiers from D-Day.