WWII veteran 'happy to be alive' on 4th of July
By Stefanie Bainumsbainum@abcnews4.com
LEBANON, S.C. (WCIV) -- Reginald Salisbury entered World War II at the age of 18. Raised a country boy in Berkeley County, Salisbury said his pedigree helped determine his position in the war as an Army Scout.
"I could get in the woods and briars and all because I was brought up hunting around here," said 88-year-old Salisbury.
Working with a Native American code-talker with a mission of gathering German secrets, Salisbury landed on D-Day and was eventually captured by the enemy.
Turning through the pages of memories in a scrapbook made by his wife of more than 50 years, Anne Salisbury, there are some things Salisbury said he doesn't need to see pictures to remember.
"'Nicht, nicht, nicht.' Never forget those three words," Salisbury said.
It was the words of a German officer who saved his life in telling a fellow German soldier not to shoot him.
"I don't hate the German people, they treated me good," Salisbury said.
Salisbury doesn't know how he survived for 10 months in a prison camp outside of Munich with no shoes, only two showers during that time, and very little food.
"We would eat whatever we could get," he said.
Salisbury was 165 pounds when he entered the prison camp and 92 pounds when he left.
On the 4th of July holiday every year Salisbury said he always feels the same -- happy to be alive.