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"Our doctors were operating 36 hours at a time." (Video Interview, Part 2, 13:05)

   Joseph Milton Hand
Collection image
Joseph Hand, 2003.
War: World War, 1939-1945; Korean War, 1950-1953
Branch: Army; Army
Unit: Fitzsimons General Hospital; 81st Station Hospital; Army Reserve; Martin Army Hospital; 24th Evacuation Hospital; 6th Army Medical Depot; 829th Station Hospital
Service Location: Fort McPherson, Georgia; Fort Francis E. Warren, Wyoming; Camp Barkeley, Texas; Aurora, Colorado; New Orleans, Louisiana; North Africa; Italy; United States; also: Fort Benning, Georgia; San Antonio, Texas; Chuncheon, Korea
Rank: Staff Sergeant; Lieutenant Colonel
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For soldiers like Joseph Hand, working in medicine meant building and equipping station hospitals, sometimes from scratch. A station hospital was where a wounded soldier might recover enough to return to the front or move on to a general hospital for further care. Hand’s first hospital, a 500-bed facility in North Africa, took three months to erect and outfit. As American forces moved into Sicily and then up the boot of Italy, Hand kept building hospitals—or taking over existing buildings like an agriculture school in Naples. He joined the reserves after World War II and got called up for the Korean War. In Korea he faced a different kind of challenge: dishonest civilians stealing from the hospital he was managing.

Interview (Video)
»Interview Highlights  (8 clips)
» Part 1 |  Part 2 |  Part 3 
Download: video(1) | 
Download: video(2) | 
Download: video(3) (85 min.)
More like this
»Military Medicine: Medical Support
 Video (Interview Excerpts) (8 items)
Training as a surgical technician. (04:15) Setting up a 500-bed hospital in North Africa. (05:32) Setting up a 500-bed hospital in North Africa. Part 2 (01:20)
Moving medical operations into Italy. (02:01) In Livorno; dealing with booby traps. (02:44) Duties at Fort Benning. (01:29)
Relations with civilian workers in Korea. (03:39) Low mortality rate at his station hospital. (01:34) 

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  The Library of Congress  >> American Folklife Center
  October 26, 2011
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