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"The man who appreciates freedom the most is the free man who has become a slave." (Memoir)

   James A. Mulligan, Jr.
Collection image
Captain Jim Mulligan, USS Enterprise, Off Vietnam, Yankee Station, 1965 [detail]
War: Vietnam War, 1961-1975; World War, 1939-1945; Korean War, 1950-1953
Branch: Navy; Navy; Navy
Unit: USS Enterprise (CVN 65), Naval Aviator
Service Location: Vietnam; Gulf of Tonkin; South China Sea; also: Korea
Rank: Captain
POW: Yes
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James Mulligan, Jr.'s memoir offers an astounding amount of detail on the 2522 days he spent as a captive of North Vietnam, after his plane was shot down in March 1966. Mulligan called himself a memory bank for the other POWs, memorizing names and details about over 400 of them, which he mentally reviewed three times every day. "We were in terrible straits," he recalled, "but the mutual support we gave each other...tied us together in an iron-like chain of resistance." Mulligan made a point of giving his captors false information and shunned their attempts to "educate" him on the error of his ways, even if it meant foregoing better treatment.

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  October 26, 2011
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