Bill Schultz was one of three brothers who enlisted in the U.S. military. His younger brother, Donald, served in World War II and his other brother served in Korea.

Schultz's father, Herman, served in the U.S. Army in World War I. Though Bill Schultz served in the South Pacific and was never a prisoner of war, both his father and brother, Donald, were missing in action. Incredibly, both returned home.

Herman Schultz was a part of the 5th Marine Corps division that was in the Battle of Chateau Thierry, part of the second Battle of the Marne on July 18, 1918.

The battle was approximately 30 miles from the French capital of Paris. It was considered the turning point of World War I. The German army had beaten back Allied forces, and had even put on dress uniforms for what was expected to be a parade in Paris within a day's march. French forces were in full retreat.

However, reinforcements came from the U.S. 5th and 6th Marine Divisions to fight off the advancing Germans, who reportedly were at 60,000 men compared to 8,000 American soldiers. 

Donald Schultz was in Manila aboard the sub-tender USS Holland. He went ashore to tend to the batteries and during that time, the submarines and support ships left, stranding Donald Schultz as he missed his chance to flee the oncoming Japanese army. A submarine that was supposedly dispatched to pick up the few sailors left ashore never came.

Donald Schultz spent three years and four months in Japanese prisoner of war camps. He told his story to the Minneapolis Star-Journal in 1945. This is part of his story:

"I was taken prisoner with the 4th Marines and we were sent to Bilibid prison in Manila. After four days we were shipped by rail to Cabanatuan Prison Camp No. 2. The Japs packed 150 of us into each box car.

"We were there three months until Sept. 26, when we were shipped to Taiwan on Formosa where we stayed 45 days. Then, packed into a boat like so many sardines, we were taken to Japan. 

'We landed at Moji and were sent to Yokohama by train, arriving there Nov. 28. We worked for the Mitsubishi shipyard for two and half years, leaving that place May 12, 1945 of this year for Kamache prison camp."

While there, American warships and aircraft bombed the prison camp because it was being used as a steel mill and had anti-aircraft guns.

"On July 14, American warships shelled the coast and one American and four Dutch prisoners were killed," Schultz said. "The next day, we were bombed and strafed by American planes.

"...We had air raid shelters into which we ran, but we were warned by the Jap guards that if we attempted to escape, they would kill us."

"...We heard rumor the war was over and the Japs moved us to Obasi Prison Camp where 400 other prisoners were housed. We stayed there until Sept. 9 and during that time one American and two Dutch prisoners died. The Japs wanted us to stay until the Americans came for us, but 12 Americans and 10 British soldiers decided to leave. We walked over the mountains and got on a train. The Japs gave us food and directions and here we are (in Tokyo)." 

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