WWII: U.S. Army Surgeon in Operating Room

U.S. Army surgeon in operating room, WWII

Photo badly damaged but magnificent and eerie

My wife and I dug a little deeper into my late Aunt Mary’s incredible trove of World War II photos. She was an Army nurse with the Johns Hopkins unit and helped patch up wounded GIs all over the South Pacific. The shot above is unlabeled but may be from an 8th Army hospital on Leyte (judging from other photos with locations noted) or possibly here. Pretty primitive, isn’t it? I doubt it matters where it is, but you can tell it’s somewhere hot and humid. Of all the hundreds of photos I have from this time, this is the only one I’ve found so far that was actually taken inside an operating room—if we can call it that. Either photography was forbidden or nobody had any damn time to play with cameras. Probably both!

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  • Terri November 18, 2013, 3:21 PM

    Incredible! What a life this aunt of yours had in her younger days. This was the real-life MASH. I can’t help but wonder where the patient is today and how his knee is…

  • christian ienni November 18, 2013, 3:36 PM

    i think the damage adds to the eeriness! gives it a surreal dreamlike quality.



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