Less than half of the entire company was still healthy. In the afternoon the enemy would bombard us with artillery and do air raids, we couldn't even leave the dugouts to relieve ourselves.
I recall that in the day before we moved from valley 4 to valley 5, private first class Kotama Shigeru, from Matsuhiro town in Hanishina district, Nagano, was gravely wounded and suffered from malaria and didn't see himself surviving. In the afternoon, he told me of his life.
「My home town is close to Karuisawa. I have a wife and a seven-year-old daughter at home. My wife has an incurable illness and is bed-ridden but my daughter has no such issues. I don't think I'm going to survive. My time is up. Master sargeant Anzou, if you get back to mainland, take this pocket watch, a memento of my father, and give it to my wife and daughter.」
Was his request and he gave me his watch but, later at the Montalban POW camp, they confiscated all documents, remains of deceased and mementos.
「One last thing. I've been holding dear a piece of muscovado. I know you like sweet things, master sargeant, so please, eat it」
and he gave it to me, but I couldn't hold back my tears and couldn't bring myself to eat it. Later that night, within the dugout, private first class Kotama laid in peace. I took his little finger, wrapped it in oiled paper, and retreated to valley 5. The five men renaming in the dugout were at death's door.
Just like the wounded, everyone was giving it their all with no time to think about anyone but themselves. Malaria, dengue, amebic dysentery, lice and nothing to eat. Life is a mysterious thing. In dugouts here and there, the dead were getting buried. The company retreated from valley 3 to valley 4. During that time, there were no big engagements. I heard that, by January 29th, the Marcott airfield was completely under american control. The officers in charge of the company were first lieutenant Nakamura, warrant officer Nagashima from tank academy and master sargeant Saito, three non-commissioned officers, 4 reserves and I think 15 soldiers.