A DAUGHTER’S TRIBUTE TO HER FATHER
By Dorothy Lubertha Sciarone
My father, Hugo Hendrikus Sciarone,
was camp POW number 817, prisoner of war,
Fukuoka camp 17 in Japan.
He went after the war to Holland in 1946
for a leave and was reunited with his wife
Henny Sciarone- Geelhoed en their 6 young children.
His wife and children
(born in 1928-1930-1932-1933-1936- 1940)
were also in Japanese prison camps.
Here is a Time-Line of Hugo's path during World War II.
03-12-1942 Hugo was taken prisoner by the Japanese in Soerabaja Java where he lived with his family.
He was taken to the Darmo camp in Soerabaja.
- 10-18-1942 By train taken from Soerabaja to Batavia
- 10-25-1942 Taken to Singapore on the ship "The Teia Maru".
Arrival in Singapore on 11-01-1942 in the Changi camp/prison.
- 01-15-1943 By train taken to Bangpong in Thailand
He was in Bangpong
01-21-1943 through 06-01-1944
- 01-22-1943 taken by truck to Kin Sau. (also known as Kinsayok)
- 01-27-1943 he had to walk 30 km to camp Rintin
- 01-28-1943 he had to walk 30 km to Hindato
- 07-30-1943 taken by prau (outrigger canoe) again to Kin Sau and the next day to Chunkei
- 12-15-1943 taken by truck to Non Pladuct
- 05-19-1944 taken by train to Singapore, he was there on 05-24-1944
- 05-27-1944 With the ship "MS Aremis" he was taken to Japan.
- 06-06-1944 arrival in the harbour "Shimonescki" in Japan.
- 06-07-1944 with the ship "MS Aremis" taken to Modje in Japan.
- 06-08-1944 by train taken to Omuta (Fukuoka district) in Japan.
- 06-08-1944 he was in Camp Fukuoka 17 He was there until 10-12-1945, then he was taken by the Americans to Manila. He was taken care of in an American army hospital in the Fukuoka Camp. He lost a lot of weight and had Beri- Beri.
- 12-11-1945 He went to Makassar Celebes Dutch Indonesia.
- 01-27-1946 He was in Batavia Java Dutch Indonesia.
- 02-12-1946 He went from Batavia on the ship "MS Bloemfontein" to Holland and arrived in Amsterdam on 03-10-1946
After the war, my father, Hugo and my mother, Henny went back to Dutch Indonesia about 1947 with the 4 youngest children, two of them, among them myself, were born after the war. (1947 in Holland and 1950 in Balikpapan Borneo)
The 4 eldest children stayed in Holland.
My father worked for the SHELL Company. We lived in Balikpapan Borneo the last years. My parents stayed in Dutch Indonesia until September 1953 and then returned to Holland. My father was retired since then. They lived in Arnhem.
My father was born January 22 1903 in Arnhem Holland and died on September 30 1989. My mother was born March 9 1907 in the Haque Holland and died June 29 1987.
My father was a very forgivable man. He met, during the war, a Japanese soldier who was kind and human to him and therefore he was differentiated in his opinion. Of course he was hurt about everything what the Japanese had done to his wife, children and himself, but he was mild in his judgment.
He was a caring man, not only for his family, but also for people he met or who lived in his neighborhood and needed help in any way. My father helped wherever he was able to help. He had also "two right hands" and could make anything he wanted and did all kind of things for other people too.
Also he helped his father financially, who was a widower and lived in Arnhem in Holland, in the years before and during. World War II until his father died. This was a big help, because in those days old people did not have an income if they were not able to work anymore.
He was very fond of his brothers and sisters and visited them often when he lived in Arnhem again. In September 1953 we as a family lived definitive in Arnhem again. My father had 7 brothers and 3 sisters!
He was also very fond of his children and grandchildren. He was a real family man.
He had a very soft character but was also brave in many ways.
During the war he had his moments that he wanted to give up, but the thought of his wife and children and the possibility they might be still alive, kept him going on. He was aware of the fact she had to take care for 6 children and he just had to take care for him self, so he told us. He had to work hard and there was hardly something to eat in the camp. He had to eat, for example, snakes, to stay alive.
My parents were very religious; my mother was born in a Protestant family, my father in a Roman Catholic family. Their faith helped them to cope in the war.
My father was a very honest man, who always took care of his wife and children very, very well. He was very precious to me and I miss him and my mother every day very much. I was the last child, they were not young when I was born, but I had a great childhood. I loved my parents very much.
My mother was a mother who was always thinking first of the well-being of her children. Therefore she worried
a lot in her life. She had a strong character and was an intelligent woman with many interests. She loved to read!
When the war began my parents lived in Soerabaja on Java in Dutch Indonesia. After my father was taken as
prisoner of war by the Japanese, my mother lived with the children in Soerabaja until 01-01-1943.
Then they were all taken to a part of the city called 'Darmocamp".
On 01-05-1943 they were transported by train to Semarang, on Java. They had to stay in a camp named “Karangpanas" and stayed in a little church and had to sleep on wooden boards.
September 14-15, 1944 the boys were taken by truck to the boy's camp named "Bangkong",
also in Semarang on Java.
September 18th, 1944 my mother and her three daughters were taken by train to the camp "Lampersarie", also in Semarang.
So because she had to let her sons go to the boys camp when they were only ten years old and a little older, she worried a lot about them. It was very hard for her to see that she was not able to feed her 6 children in the prison camps and that they were not able to go to a school.
She once told me she enjoyed the youth of my brother and me (we were born after the war) because our youth was so normal. (He was born in 1947, I was born in 1950) She was able to feed us properly and she was able to send us to school. The only thing she worried about was the traffic; she made sure we would be very careful on our way to school!
My mother knew a lot about medicines, herbs and nutrition matters. This helped her in a way to keep her children alive. For example, she made a sort of soup from weeds. One day a Japanese beat her up very badly because of that. She told the children, who were witnesses of the incident, "They think they will win, but do not worry, they will not win."
They also ate frogs (not the poisonous ones), snails and slugs, My eldest sister told me she once had to eat a grasshopper, but a younger sister cannot remember the grasshoppers. There was also a porridge made of "tapokia" (tapioca) flour. It tasted very starchy.
In the camps was hardly something to eat. There were a lot of illnesses. For example: Malaria tropical, Beriberi, amoeba-dysentery, icterus and the so called “hookworm disease”. This was all because of the worse circumstances and hardly anything to eat.
After the war the family (mother and children) received parcels from the Red Cross and they had to share one tin of salmon for all seven of them. This meant one teaspoon per person and my eldest sister was allowed to give everyone their teaspoon because she was very honest and everyone trusted her well. Other people who also got a tin and had less people to share it with got very sick because their stomachs were not used to this sort of food anymore.
But my parents, my brothers and sisters did all survive. One sister almost died in camp, she was the youngest of the 6 and she was very ill. But she recovered. My mother prayed for her very, very hard.
After the war we all enjoyed the family life. My parent's grandchildren gave a lot of joy and they were the proof that life goes on....
The only shadow was the pain my parents had, and also the pain my brothers and sisters had, because of the war.
In a way I also grew up with the war, as well as my brother.
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