19 Totally Incredible Facts
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A Japanese soldier refused to surrender to U.S. forces after WWII. Instead, he hid in Guam for 27 years.


A Japanese soldier refused to surrender to U.S. forces after WWII. Instead, he hid in Guam for 27 years.

Shoichi Yokoi, a Japanese sergeant in World War II, returned to Japan in 1972, 27 years after World War II ended. Two American hunters discovered Yokoi in the jungle in Guam. They turned him over to the police, and he was sent back home. He had been hiding in the jungle rather than surrender to U.S. forces at the end of the war.

Yoichi was living in a cave, eating fish and rats, and made clothes out of tree bark. Like other Japanese troops, he was trained to fight to the death and told that surrendering was shameful. Upon returning to Japan he discovered that he had been declared dead in 1944.

The Japan that he came back to was very different than the one he left. He had never heard of jet planes, television, or the atomic bomb. ''I am ashamed that I have returned alive,'' he said.

Shoichi Yokoi wasn't the only Japanese WWII vet to hide out that long, either. Two years later, a lieutenant named Hiroo Onoda was discovered hiding out in the Philippine jungle. (source)
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