Sea Warfare No Novelty To Chinese Recruit
Chin Thiam Lee, Chinese recruit with Co. 177, is not a newcomer in sea-going warfare-his experiences during the past seven years reveal he's pretty well accustomed to it now. Since 1936 Lee has been in foreign merchant marine service which took him around the world four times and brought him into contact with the enemy often. He was under fire frequently and barely escaped with his life last year. Lee was first torpedoed on his 23rd birthday while aboard a tanker. The ship survived the attack and five months later went through a bombing raid in which Lee received an eye injury.
Wounded by Bomb
The 26 year Chinese's most harrowing experience was aboard a tanker in the Atlantic. Enemy U-boats attacked both sides of the ship, setting it afire. The crew was ordered to abandon ship and as Lee came up from engine room helping an injured shipmate, a bomb burst and knocked him to the deck. Splinters hit him in the face, hands and legs. Heading for the ships pontoons, he was struck in the leg by a bullet. He managed to get overboard and found a few pieces of driftwood to cling to. U-boats passed nearby. Then Lee and other survivors spotted a life-raft. Adrift for four days, the group was picked up by an Allied patrol boat and taken to Safety.