World Battlefronts: First There Were Three

Though his mother back in New Jersey had worn black for a month, Michael Wajda, ship's electrician, was not dead. While the raft under him drifted in the doldrums, he clung to life, alternately raved, mumbled and lay insensate under the equatorial sun. Last week came word that after 46 days on the flotsam-cradling sea he had been picked up near Georgetown, British Guiana, was recovering in a hospital there.

A torpedo had blasted Wajda's ship, a U.S. merchantman, at night; shellfire pummeled her carcass. Shell fragments got Wajda in the head and ankle,...

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