A special forces soldier was forced to sit in his own poo and eat rats during a horrific five-year captivity.

Raymond Schrump, was a retired veteran of the Green Beret Special Forces – the US equivalent of the SAS – passing selection in 1962, just a few years before the US sent troops to fight in the Vietnam War.

In 1967 he was promoted to Major and was subsequently assigned to the Military Assistance Command Vietnam (MACV) as a Senior District Advisor assigned to Tay Ninh Province, Southern Vietnam, before arriving in the East Asian country in 1968.

Only four months later however, he was captured by the Vietcong and was held for nearly five years, before being released in February 1973 – a period which lasted 1,727 days.

Raymond was in the village of Go Da Ha when it was attacked by the Vietcong on May 23.

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Raymond was deployed to Vietnam in 1968

He set out to recover the bodies of the dead, but his jeep was ambushed and he was taken captive.

Speaking to GruntTV 1776 on YouTube, the former soldier said: “They [Vietcong] came out of the wood line about dusk and their lead person – I don’t know if it was the ambush commander or not – saw me, took out a pistol and put it to my forehead.

“I thought of my wife and said, ‘Oh my God honey, I’m sorry’ – I thought I was gone.

“A flash bulb then went off – I believe the person was a Japanese journalist – and after it went off, he withdrew the pistol and put it back in the hold. That’s how I got captured.”

He was captured on May 23, 1968 and was held captive for nearly five years
He was captured on May 23, 1968 and was held captive for nearly five years

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During the next four and a half years, the veteran endured many hardships, including being kept in solitary confinement and total isolation for two years while chained up.

He said: “I was in total isolation, chained like an animal, starved, beaten, and tortured, tried as a war criminal and sentenced to death.”

Some of the most gruesome maltreatment he was put through was being forced to sit in his own faeces for days.

He explained: “I laid there for three days, I was not allowed to go to the bathroom, I lived in my own filth for three days until an interpreter came and in perfect English said that I was going to be taken to a Prisoner of War (POW) camp.”

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The lock and chain that was used to keep Raymond "chained like an animal"
The lock and chain that was used to keep Raymond “chained like an animal”

Despite the conditions improving at the POW camp, the food reportedly ranged from barely adequate to completely inadequate.

The menu included disgusting meats such as monkeys and tropical birds, as well as animals such as rats and dogs.

This diet, he said, combined with frequent attacks of malaria, dysentery and tropical ulcers, produced a slow decline in his physical condition.

Finally, after nearly five years of living in squalid conditions, a peace deal was struck between the US and the Vietcong in January 1973.

He retired from the army in December 1973
He retired from the army in December 1973

That led to the guards becoming much more friendly and he was eventually released a month later.

He was hospitalised for five months to recover from the shocking litany of injuries suffered while he was a prisoner.

Shortly after being released from the hospital, he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel, and retired from the army on December 31, 1973, before opening and operating a small service business.

On October 27, 2019, he passed away at the age of 87.

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