Always the Children

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Always the Children

Anne Watts

Publisher:Simon & Schuster Ltd

Born in 1940, Anne Watts grew up in a small Welsh village and, like her tough-as-old-boots Merchant Navy father, she had a traveller's heart. Inspired by school geography lessons that told of far-off lands, Anne was determined to break out of the conventional options open to women in post-war Britain. She trained as a nurse, defied her father's outdated views, and enlisted with Save the Children to be posted to Vietnam in 1967. One of the first British nurses airlifted into that notorious war zone, Anne was faced with a vision of hell that her training in Manchester's Royal Infirmary had barely prepared her for. Thrown in at the deep end, Anne nursed children with their limbs blown off, cared for dying teenage soldiers and did her best to make life bearable - and at times even enjoyable - for her charges. She went on to take her skills to the killing fields of Cambodia, to the first Gulf War and, latterly, worked as a midwife with tribal peoples in outback Australia and northern Canada.Woven into Anne's vivid personal memoir of courage and compassion are the heartbreaking tales of the children she cared for and, possibly most moving of all, the story of how Anne's idyllic childhood was shattered by a family tragedy when she was 10 years old, and which shaped her personality forever.

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