In "The Walking Wounded" our ever persistent Sergeant Saunders gives a lesson in character to ambulance driver Jones (well played by Stephen Joyce), and Captain August (well played by Gary Merrill.)
After an abandoned aid station in Orre is re-bombed by the Germans, Captain August and his subordinates Private Jones and Lieutenant Ann Hunter (well played by Geraldine Brooks) abandon dying Private John Lee in the back of the ambulance. Upon his return, Saunders finds Lee in the ambulance and continues the journey to the nearest field hospital, which is right into German territory. Knowing they abandoned Private Lee, Saunders picks up Captain August, Lieutenant Hunter, and Private Jones along the way.
One could visualize Captain August in contemporary times telling Saunders his behavior is "unacceptable." Saunders is anything but politically correct. Yet, he does the right thing because it's the right thing to do and risks court martial in the process. Beautifully done!
Burt Kennedy wrote and directed this excellent episode. Dialog and character development are outstanding among the group such that the story holds up without many Combat scenes. One major scene however involves a German patrol and is very memorable featuring a pragmatic Saunders.
Again we learn why persistence and determination are everything. The ending sequence crossing the valley is what Americans are all about - Priceless! Dialog between the group just prior to this sequence is memorable showing Saunders' great leadership ability.
Hats off to Sergeant Saunders' stunt double in the opening sequence - it took a lot of guts.
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