A dwindling band of brothers

Updated: 2015-08-12 07:44

By Wu Fang(China Daily)

  Comments() Print Mail Large Medium  Small 分享按钮 0

A dwindling band of brothers

Lin Jingquan, 91, from Putian, Fujian province, joined the army at age 19. After studying medicine in the army, he worked on the frontline as an army surgeon and witnessed the deaths of many young soldiers. Photo by Wu Fang / for China Daily

A dwindling band of brothers

Lin Jingquan works out at home on a rainy day. He exercises every day to keep fit. Photo by Wu Fang / for China Daily

The army surgeon

Lin Jingquan had just graduated from school when he was drafted in 1943. He studied medicine in the army, and witnessed the horrors of war as a surgeon on the front line. "Soldiers were sent to the hospital one group after another. Many had to have arms or legs amputated because of infections caused by bullets or shrapnel," he recalled.

Lin was twice sent to a frontline hospital during battles on the borders of Jiangxi and Hunan provinces. The scenes he witnessed shocked him to the core.

"The soldiers were carried from the field on stretchers, one after another. I was in charge of bandaging their wounds. Many soldiers died before we could finish tending to them, but I was too busy to feel sad," he said.

Liu Yuedong said his early enrollment in the military helped him to develop regular routines and to make do with a simple diet: factors he believes have helped him remain healthy deep into old age, despite the bull-et scars he will carry until death.