Two who came home: Former Vietnam POWs go for a ride at Randolph (Ted Sienicki, Rudolph Zuberbuhler)

The food at the Hanoi Hilton was worse than just bad. As a prisoner of war, Ted Sienicki found the bread full of insects.

Many of the POWs ate the rations anyway — with predictable results. One prisoner removed something from his body — just what isn’t clear — that was 19 inches long.

“It looked like a long worm of some type,” said Sienicki, a retired Air Force major who, in 1973, had returned home from 330 days of captivity 40 pounds lighter and sickened by five different parasites. “We’re eating filthy food, we had bread instead of rice (that) was full of cockroach wings and legs and stuff like that, so there was plenty of opportunity to have germs there.

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