The day after Japan bombed the U.S naval base at Pearl Harbor, on December 7, 1941, the Japanese invasion of the Philippine began. Within a month, the Japanese had captured Manila, the capital of the Philippines, and the American and Filipino defenders of Luzon (the island on which Manila is located) were forced to retreat to the Bataan Peninsula. For the next three month, the combined U.S – Filipino army held out despite a lack of naval and air support. Finally, on April 9, with his forces crippled by starvation anddisease, U.S General Edward Jr.(1884-1958), surrendered his approximately 75,000 troops to Bataan.
CAPAS FREEDOM MARCH
Theme : March for a Veteran
The CAPAS FREEDOM MARCH is a national event organized by the Automobile Association Philippines in order to pay tribute to the strength and valor that was exhibited by war veterans both Filipino, Americans and others. It aims to honor the Filipino and foreign soldiers and civilians who defended the Philippines during World War II sacrificing their freedom, health and in many cases their lives. It also aims to define the major role of Filipinos during World War II and inculcate a sense of pride among Filipinos.
In 2017, we plan to make the event more meaningful, engaging and memorable in time for the 75th Year Anniversary of the Bataan Death March. With the theme “March for a Veteran”, thousands of people from all walks of life will march to honor a veteran of their choice in Capas, Tarlac. Local and foreign military personnel who have fought in a war, family members and friends of a veteran, civilians – young and old, rich and poor – will march together united as one in remembering the sacrifice of the heroes. Also invited are the Veterans of Foreign Wars to make the Capas Freedom March a symbol of our quest for peace and freedom.
To honor and remember the Bataan Death March heroes who actually made a forced march as POWs in 1942 under the worst of conditions
To impress upon the youth that the price of freedom that we all now enjoy is the result of the long arduous ordeal that our Bataan Death March endured. In the process, the value of nationalism will be instilled to present and future generations
To recognize the universal value of democracy, human dignity, equality, open society and respect for human rights
To learn that the true essence of survival is compassion, sacrifice, mutual aid and altruism
To preserve and promote historical sites and events, building an edifice of Historical Tourism