Ruby Bradley was a woman who never gave up and never stopped doing what she could to protect soldiers. She joined the United States Army Nurse Corps in 1934 and was at Camp John Hay in the Philippines when Pearl Harbor was attacked. A mere three weeks later she was captured by the Japanese Army.
In 1943 she was moved to the Santo Tomas Internment Camp in Manila. She was housed with several other nurses, all of whom became known as Angels in Fatigues for the work they did to save their fellow captives. She was able to provide medical help to the prisoners in the POW camp and would even give up her meagre rations to feed starving children that she saw around the camp.
Her weight dropped drastically, which helped her to be able to smuggle medical supplies into the POW camp under her uniform. It was with this equipment that she performed 230 operations and delivered 13 children. On February 3, 1945, the camp was liberated and Bradley, weighing only 86 pounds, was rescued. Despite her ordeal, she continued her career in the army and earned her Bachelor of Science degree.
During the Korean War, she served as Chief Nurse for the 171st Evacuation Hospital. In November 1950, she refused to evacuate until every one of the sick and wounded in the hospital were on the plane to safety. She was the last person to evacuate, jumping onto the plane just before her ambulance was hit with an enemy shell. For her bravery and determination, she was made Chief Nurse for the Eighth Army. In 1958, she was made a colonel and became one of the most decorated women in the United States military earning 34 decorations, medals and awards. She retired in 1963, and died in 2002.