By Philippine News Agency
MANILA — The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said it is only proper and fitting that Filipino and American troops who died in the name of freedom be honored.
AFP public affairs office chief, Col. Noel Detoyato made the remark ahead of the country’s commemoration of the 77th anniversary of the fall of Bataan on April 9, commonly known as the “Araw ng Kagitingan” (Day of Valor).
“We have to remember the heroism and sacrifices of those who died fighting for the freedom we are now enjoying,” Detoyato said when asked when asked why it is important to honor the soldiers who died defending the country against the Japanese invaders during the World War II.
Also, Detoyato said the sacrifices made by Filipino and American troops should be an inspiration for the present-day generation to preserve the freedom they have fought and died for.
“We value their memories and take it as our inspiration to do our part in preserving what they died for.
Underequipped and meagerly supplied American and Filipino forces, fighting in the Bataan frontlines, were forced to surrender in April 9, 1942 after 93 days of gallant resistance against the superior Japanese force equipped with the latest war equipment,” Detoyato said.
Some 60,000 Filipino and American troops were made prisoners of war by Japanese forces.
They were made to walk some 112 kilometers from Mariveles, Bataan to Capas, Tarlac under the scorching sun with no food and water for days in what is known the world over as the “Death March”.