In 1945 the Second World War continued with undiminished ferocity. The forces of Germany and Japan were in retreat and as the fighting neared their homelands, they contested every foot of ground with a new and furious intensity. By the end of the war, more than 400,000 allied servicemen had died in action. More than one million more were wounded while hundreds of thousands suffered painful debilitating injuries. However the tragedy of this enormous number of casualties could have been much worse. Throughout the war, another battle was fought at, and just behind, the front lines - a battle to save lives. The fact that so many servicemen did live to tell the tale is a testament to the brave doctors and nurses who fought daily against death in some of the worst physical and psychological conditions imaginable. Some wounds would, however, take a lifetime to heal, some never would. The emotional scars inflicted by the loss of friends and comrades were among the deepest. This bottomless pit of sorrow was perhaps the greatest price of war.