Japanese POW camp survivor to tell his family’s story in Auburn

By: Journal Staff Report
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With links to Placer and Nevada counties, Bill Moule Jr. is set to share childhood memories Friday of life in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp during World War II. Moule was born into a Grass Valley family and moved to the Philippine Islands in 1940 when his father – who had been working in Nevada County mines – secured a better job there in a mountain gold mine. Moule was 3 at the time. The islands were invaded Dec. 8, 1941, and occupied by Japanese forces. Many of the foreign workers and their families escaped to the hills in an effort to evade the Japanese military but were eventually interned as prisoners of war until hostilities ended. The Moule family was among them. Moule said his talk will concentrate on his family’s experiences, including 20 months moving almost weekly in the mountains and than another 20 months in the Japanese camp. “I’ll take listeners through the whole experience of a family trying to survive and living by their wits,” Moule said. “It’s not so much about war but about ‘What does a family do?’” The Moule family returned to Grass Valley and relatives of Bill Moule Jr. continue to live there. Moule Jr. lives in Red Bluff while a brother, Mike Moule, is an Auburn resident and owns Moule’s Foothill Glass. Moule will be guest speaker at the Friends of the Auburn Library Noon Program at noon Friday, Oct. 7 in the Auburn Library’s Beecher Room, 350 Nevada. The noon programs are free and open to the public. Refreshments are provided. Participants are asked to try to arrive about 10 to 15 minutes early. – Gus Thomson