W.W. II, The Bataan Death March was a tragedy of epic proportions with 76,000 American and Filipino prisoners of war forcibly transferred, on foot, by the Imperial Japanese Army to Bataan. Even as the American and Filipino troops repelled the Japanese for several months, they were forced to retreat to wait for supplies and reinforcements. But the Japanese had cut off all routes to the Philippines, preventing a rescue by U.S. Military and the troops were forced to surrender on April 4, 1942.
The man in charge and responsible for the Bataan Death March was Japan's General Homma Masaharu. Or so the American military commission found. Homma had surrendered in Tokyo on September 14, 1945, was tried at Manila, convicted, and executed via firing squad at Los Baños, Luzon, the Philippines, on April 3, 1946.
Japanese soldiers stand guard over American war prisoners just before the start of the "Bataan Death March" in 1942. This photograph was stolen from the Japanese during Japan's three-year occupation. (AP Photo/U.S. Marine Corps)
A 1923 photograph of my grandfather, Francisco B. Bautista who joined the U.S. Army's Philippine Scouts in 1922. He was a defender of Corregidor during World War II having served with the 92nd Coast Artillery, Philippine Scouts.
The Bataan Death March was the forcible transfer, by the Imperial Japanese Army, of 60,000 Filipino and 15,000 American prisoners of war after the three-month Battle of Bataan in the Philippines during World War II. All told, approximately 2,500–10,000 Filipino and 300–650 American prisoners of war died before they could reach Camp O'Donnell.