Louis Zamperini: Unbroken

Bridget Walsh

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Zamperini faced many difficulties at the POW camp because they obtained information that he was an olympic gold medalist. This picture is of the most memorable scene in thw film "Unbroken" where the "Bird" forced him to stand for hours while holding the hunk of wood, and Zamperini wa cheered for because of his ddedication to prove to the "Bird" that he could.

Significance in WWII

After crash landing in the Pacific ocean, being captured by the Japanese, and being pronounced dead, Louis Zamperini returned home and lived up to his legacy. After falling to alcoholism and almost getting a divorce with his wife he was inspired after hearing a Billy Graham sermon in Los Angeles. He then he started a camp for troubled youths called Victory Boys Camp. Zamperini decided and pursued to go back to Japan and forgive all the people that mistreated him during the war. Zamperini was also given the honor of carrying the torch at the Nagano Winter Games. Louis Zamperini's life inspires everyone that is told about it, his significance in the war is fenominal and he gave hope for everyone around him during those difficult times.

Specific Details

Louis Zamperini was an Olympic gold medalist, when WWII began the Olympics of 1940 were cancelled, and Zamperini enlisted himself to the Army Air Force. While on the force his plane suffered mechanical failure and crashed i the Pacific Ocean. After 47 days at sea, with two fellow crew members that were aboard the B-24 Liberator, they landed on Japanese territory and were taken prisoner. A Japanese General , Mutsuhiro Wantanabe, soon got knowledge that Zamperini was an Olympic gold medalist and used that against him and tried to make Zamperini feel inferior to him, pushing Zamperini to his limit everyday. Zamperini was then released at the end of the war in 1947, after two years at the POW camp and being pronounced dead.


Louis Silvie Zamperini was an Italian immigrant in 1917, when he moved to Olean, New York.Growing up running around the track at Torrence High School, located in Caliofornia, Zamperini discovered he had a strong competitive streak when it came to distance running. After beating the high school record for fastest mile in 1934, he was given a scholarship to the University of Southern California. After getting verified top compete in the Olympics he placed 8th place overall and even got to see Adolf Hitler. He would've had another shot at getting the gold medal if WWII hadn't ceased the Olympic games that year, so instead he signed up for the Army Air Corps. He suffered mentally from his traumatic experiences in war and fell into alcoholism when he returned and almost got a divorce with his wife. He later found a source of inspiration for himself and worked to help troubled youths and even revisited his nightmares in Japan, visiting the people who tortured him for two years. After passing away, at the surprising age of 97, his story lived on and was even made into an award winning film "Unbroken".