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"Locked Up Abroad" Season 9 is a reality series that airs on the National Geographic Channel.

As the longest POW in Vietnam history, Ernie Brace likely endured more than any other POW during the war. Held for almost eight years — from May 1965 to March 1973 — he faced capture, starvation, sickness, torture, solitude, desperation and more. Call him resilient and impressive. A survivor and true American hero. So says Sen. John McCain, who became lifelong friends with him during his own five-year internment in Vietnam.

Brace's harrowing firsthand account of captivity kicks off the ninth season. Details of his time as a POW include being marched more than 100 miles through harsh jungles, chained in a bamboo cage 24/7, attempting several futile escapes with subsequent beatings and being buried alive up to his neck.

After 3½ years, Brace was transported from the Southeast Asian jungles to the infamous prison in Vietnam dubbed the "Hanoi Hilton," and finally heard the voice of another American in the next cell: Lt. Cmdr. John McCain, a Navy bomber pilot shot down over Hanoi.

McCain had spent nearly a year in solitary confinement and was desperate for human contact. Though they couldn't see each other, McCain and Brace began tapping messages secretly through the wall. If they were caught communicating, it was an instant beating, but they took the risk and soon shared everything imaginable. However, it wasn't until May 1973, just months after they were released and attending a White House reception held by President Nixon, that they would — at long last — meet face-to-face. McCain recounts, "A guy came up to me and I looked at him and he said, 'I'm Ernie Brace.' I went 'Wow.' It was such an emotional moment for me."

In this first exclusive in-depth interview, McCain and Brace describe their incredible stories, which led to a lifelong friendship. "[Ernie's] is an amazing survival story," says McCain, "an amazing story of heroism ... it should be told to every American."

"Locked Up Abroad" is a cult cable favorite known for taking viewers inside accounts of capture, incarceration and terror far away from home with intimate personal interviews and dramatic reenactments. In Season 9, we'll hear the firsthand accounts not only of those who were locked up but also of those who were directly part of the story, such as the undercover agent compiling the evidence against the suspect or the person making the drug dealing offers.

Other episodes in Season 9 include stories of Californian surfers arrested in Mexico after the shipwreck of their marijuana-filled yacht, who attempt to dig their way out of prison; a reptile smuggler who travels to Belize to avoid U.S. prosecution but is deported back home; and an English ecstasy dealer living the high life until he is caught by American police.


Network: National Geographic Channel
Genre: Reality
Runtime: 60 mins.
Premiere Date: July 24, 2007
Seasons: 9
Production Company: Raw Television

John McCain in "Locked Up Abroad" 'Locked Up Abroad' Season 9 Kicks Off with John McCain — The senator and Ernice Brace, the longest POW in Vietnam history, provide a harrowing account of the secret communication at the "Hanoi Hilton" which led to a life-changing bond. Read more...

Got Locked Up Abroad spoilers? What did you think of the last show?

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