Jos Van Arcken (born 1910), an East Indian war veteran and former prisoner of war (POW), was interned at a Japanese forced labour camp during World War II (WW2) and subsequently worked on the notorious Sumatra (Pekanbaru) Railway. He recalls, 'In Pekanbaru itself, we found a meadow with ditches along the Siak River, but there were no barracks to be seen, nothing at all. As it turned out, we were the ones to build them. Soon thereafter, we were put to work building the railroad. Some of that came, of course, with a beating or two.' During his time as a POW Jos found that he could use profession as a watchmaker to his advantage and the relationships that he forged with his guards eventually saved his life. Jos comments, 'I've come to realize that I'm one of the lucky ones because I really should have been dead long ago.'