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Mukaishima POW Camp

Historic Flag Going to Museum

Omtvedt Presents First Flag

Museum Inscription

Rhodun Martin Bussell

Flag He Helped Make Found

Hear “To The Colors”

“Tears streamed down the gaunt cheeks of every prisoner. Some of them were so weak from the starvation they were barely able to stand at attention.”

— Clifford M. Omtvedt


Mukaishima, Hiroshima POW Sub-camp No. 4


These 100 American prisoners of war were transported out of the Philippines to Japan along with 935 other POWs on board the Hell Ship Noto Maru in August 1944.  One having died, on 18 August 1945 at 11:00am, the surviving ninety-nine Americans raised a homemade flag in Mukaishima prisoner-of-war camp accompanied by “To the Colors” blown on a confiscated Japanese bugle. The Flag was thereafter raised daily until their liberation by American forces on September 13, 1945.  The flag was the FIRST American flag to fly over Japan following surrender.


The inscription on one of the plaques of the Japan-United Kingdom Friendship Monument, dedicated in March 2002 to the 23 British prisoners of war who died at Mukaishima states, “In November 1942, 100 British aircraftmen were brought here from Indonesia. Of these, 23 became ill and died.”  It goes on to say that “In September 1944, 116 American soldiers were brought here from the Philippines.”


On August 8, 1945, the ‘Nip Clipper’, a B-29 Superfortress belonging to the 5th Sqdn. 9th BG 313th Wing of the 20th AF based at Tinian, was shot down 100 miles west of Kyushu.  Ten survivors drifted at sea until August 14th when they were picked up by Japanese villagers.  Abused and beaten by the villagers, they were handed over to the local police.  For the next five days, they traveled by various means to Mukaishima.  Arriving on August 20, 1945, the men learned the war had ended the day after they were taken captive.  Pilot Carl Holden recalled there were 106 Americans in the camp and 75 Brits when he and his men arrived.


In 1952, Colonel Artman, then a Major, and the only American officer in the camp, recalled there were 99 of the 100 American prisoners who arrived at the camp one year earlier still living when the war ended, and 78 Brits.


If you can provide any information as to who the additional seven Americans might have been, please contact us!


Of the 100 prisoners pictured, the following 67 are named with their POW numbers below. The handwritten list was cross-checked with the prisoner roster of the Noto Maru, with some additional information provided by Mr. Roger Mansell, Director, Center for Research, Allied POWs under the Japanese.



101. Ralph Townsend Artman, MD

102. Thomas H. Bogie, USA (Inf), Bataan

103. John P. Baskin, USAAC

104. Jack D. Gregory, CAC

105. Vernon A. Wheatley, CAC

106. Orval L. Simpson, CAC

107. Houston E. Lowe, CAC

108. James D. Copeland, USAAC

109. Robert L. Horn, USAAC

110. William V. ‘Bill’ Baits, USAAC


Edmund S. Zielinkski

B Btry 60th CAC

#4 Gun Commander, Corregidor

112. Thomas T. Harrill, USA (CWS)

113. Broda Rayborn, USA (Inf)

114. Homer O. Shannon, USAAC

115. Ferron E. Cummins, USAAC

116. Isaac B. Piercy, USA (ORD)

117. Waino Daun, USA

118. Leslie L. Long, USA (MC)

119. Leonard Virgil Pickett, USN

120. John Hryn, USAAC

121. Armando J. Reveglia, CAC

122. Charles C. Branum, 71st Inf

123. Rhodun Martin Bussell, 515th CAAA

124. Arturo R. Camacho, CAC

125. Cipriano Paul Chavez, 515th CAAA

126. Adam P. Ciborek, CAC

127. James H. Davis, USA (QMC)

128. Abel Reyes Escalante, 515th CAAA

129. Lawrence E. Howell, USAAC

130. Herbert F. Johnson, USAAC


Terral H. Johnson

B Co., 31st Infantry, Bataan

132. Clifford M. Omtvedt, 515th CAAA

133. William E. Twigg, CAC

134. Leo P. Vistuba, USAAC

135. Norman W. Roberts, USA (MC)

136. Alfred A. Angert, CAC

137. Floyd W. Horton, USA (Inf)

138. George E. Martinez, 200th CAAA

139. Raymond J. Howard, USA (Inf)

140. Paul S. Jakubowski, CAC

141. Otto R. Kafer, USA (Inf)

142. John Kuslak, USA (SC)

143. Francis W. Malikowski, USAAC

144. Wayne W. McHenry, CAC

145. Elijah L. Millsap, USA (Inf)

146. Albert B. Moore, USA (Inf)

147. Cecil A. Plymale, CAC

148. Edgar L. Pope, USAAC

149. John F. Potris, 31st Inf, Corregidor

150. George W. Scott, USAAC

151. Joseph Semanchick, USAAC

152. James H. Shuford, USA (SC)

153. Melvin J. Stambaugh, USA (QMC)

154. Andrew J. Stanley, CAC

155. Edward W. Tyrrell, CAC

156. Leo M. Wagner, CAC

157. Norace Whitecotton, 60th CAC

158. George L. Williams, CAC

160. Howard E. Hicks, USAAC

161. William G. Gunnip, USA (SC)

162. Laurie J. Gillespie, USA (CE)

163. Stanley E. Fort, USA (QMC)

164. James E. Edwards, USA (Inf)

165. Dale P. Earing, USAAC

166. Jax Cooper, CAC

167. Lawrence Bowman, CAC

168. William J. Black, 701st ORD (Avn.)