Part 2 Life Lessons Louis Zamperini
Louis and two other crew members were lost out in sea for 47 days. They were malnourished and lost about 50 pounds. How do things go from surviving a plane crash to being lost at sea? Then they were even shot at twice by enemy bombers that spotted their raft as it floated aimlessly out in the ocean waters. On day 33 one of the crew members ends up dieing on their raft. How does a person not give up after going through such trying times?
On day 47 they are relieved when they arrive at the Marshall Islands. However, on that island the Japanese had set up what was known as Death Camp. Prisoners never made it off the Island alive. Louis and the other surviving crew member were dragged and beaten then thrown into small cells. For food they received small rice balls which were thrown on the floor. Louis said if you didn’t get on the ground and grab it first the rats would get it.
Miraculously they made it off ‘Death Island’ and were sent to a POW camp in Tokyo. This where Louis meets the prison guard Watanabe aka ‘The Bird’. ‘The Bird’s’ personal mission in life was to make Louis’ life a living hell. It was known that Louis was Olympian. That even drove ‘The Bird’ to want to break Louis’ spirit even further. The daily constant abuse Louis received from ‘The Bird’ caused Louis to hold on to that saying “If I can take it. I can make it”.
He was even offered an escape from the POW camp if we were to just to say some propaganda that the Japanese government wanted him to say over the airwaves. Louis declined. Back to the POW camp he went to be abused even further. How can you not crack when you are hit with the worst in life? From looking at Louis’ life he held onto that saying when he was going through a tough time. “If I can take it. Then I can make it.” You too can use that line when life gets hard and difficult and when you’re faced with obstacles in your journey.
There will be times when you feel it’s just not worth moving forward…but if you can take it just little longer and not throw in the towel mentally. Keep writing. Keep calling. Accept the rejection just one more time. You will make it.
Louis finally became a free man as the war ended and he went back home a hero. If you have some time check out the movie “Unbroken”