A long way gone

Character: Ishmeal Beah


The beginning of his journey

Approx. 1993

This is the beginning of Ishmeals great and horrendous journey.

In January of 1993, Ishmael, Junior, and Talloi set off from their village of Mogbwemo on a trip to the town of Mattru Jong to participate in a friend's talent show. They visit the town of Kabati, Ishmael and Junior's grandmother's village, along the way. There, Mamie Kpana, as the grandmother is known, questions them about their schooling. When they reach Mattru Jong they meet up with their friends, Gibrilla, Kaloko, and Khalilou.

Rising action

February 1993

Ishmeal Beah returns to his village and informs all of the villagers that the rebels are coming and have already invaded the village next to them.

The invasion

March 1993

The rebels invade the village and slaughter hundreds of people, Luckily Ishmeal and his friends/siblings survive with him and the struggle for survival begins

The struggle

APRIL 1993

As the struggle begins, Ishmeal and his companions begin travelling from village to village asking for food and water but also warning the citizens of the rebels.

Drop the bananas

May 1993

As the weeks pass the group finds themselves in a old burned down village, they could only suspect the rebels were there. As they were quietly about to escape with 2 bags full of bananas a rebel heard them. The big chase was on and it lasted for 2 whole days. Many were injured and tired but they could not stop running. To preserve energy and speed they were forced to drop the bananas and leave them behind to escape

Soo… tired

June 1993

After many months no matter how fast you run, no matter how long you hide: You will eventually get tired and that is when they were caught

The child soldier

July 1993

After the capture of Ishmeal the rebels brainwash, drug and create a sweet loving boy into a killing child soldier

The rescue

September 1993

The U.S american military rescue Ishmeal and many others like him and brought him to new york city


october 1993

The specialist in this field try to keep him sane so he can retell the story, he goes to many therapy sessions, circle story telling groups and rehab to try and get him off the drugs used in sierra leone