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Sadao Suzuki could not hold back tears of relief when he finally got off Guadalcanal in February 1943 in the midst of the Pacific War, having fled into the island’s jungles for six months and eaten whatever he could find.

Guadalcanal was an “island of death from starvation” after Japanese troops saw their supply lines of food and weapons cut, said Suzuki, 97. “There weren’t even any frogs, snakes or mice to eat.”

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