The Latest: Bataan Death March survivors mark anniversary

AP News
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Posted: Apr 08, 2017 7:51 PM
The Latest: Bataan Death March survivors mark anniversary

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The Latest on a ceremony in San Francisco to mark the Bataan Death March (all times local):

12:30 p.m.

Military officials and a dwindling number of World War II veterans and survivors of the infamous Bataan Death March in the Philippines have marked its 75th anniversary with a 21-gun battery salute and a ceremony in San Francisco's Presidio Officers' Club.

In 1942, Japanese soldiers forced tens of thousands of U.S. and Filipino solders on a 65-mile (105-kilometer) trudge through hot jungle to a prison camp.

On a wet and windy Saturday, retired U.S. Major Gen. Antonio Taguba, Brig. Gen. Brently Whitely of the U.S. Army Reserves and Philippine Consul General Henry Bensurto placed a flower wreath at the Presidio's West Coast World War II Memorial while a ceremonial bugle played.

Some of the veterans who survived the death march attended an indoor ceremony at the Presidio's Officers Club held later Saturday.

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11:59 p.m.

Survivors of the infamous Bataan Death March in the Philippines are marking the anniversary in San Francisco with speeches and a 21-gun battery salute to the thousands who died in it.

The march started 75 years ago in 1942 when Japanese soldiers forced tens of thousands of U.S. and Filipino solders on a 65-mile (105-kilometer) trudge through hot jungle to a prison camp.

Hundreds of American soldiers and thousands of Filipinos died along the way. Japanese soldiers shot, bayoneted or beat anyone who fell or stopped for water.

The event Saturday will also honor the mostly Filipino soldiers who held off Japanese forces in the Philippines for three months with little food or ammunition until they surrendered.

More than 250,000 Filipino soldiers served in World War II.