Manhattan Hellhole

The harrowing tale of a stalwart kidnapping victim who managed to make it out alive

The pit was dark, almost unbearably claustrophobic. The dirt walls, where captors unknown to him had shackled his arms and legs, were so close together that he found it impossible to stretch out his lanky 6-ft. 2-in. frame. As for food, which they provided irregularly, he quickly realized he should eat the bananas first and save the more durable fruits for later. He never gulped down the water, uncertain when his kidnappers would deliver the next ration.

A far greater challenge was to stay mentally fit. He found comfort in recollections of Darkness at Noon, Arthur Koestler's classic novel about a...

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