Commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of the Bombing of Pearl Harbor and the Philippines organized by the Bataan Legacy Historical Society.
Wednesday, December 7 at 6PM
War Memorial Veterans Building
401 Van Ness Ave., Room 210, San Francisco
Ongoing exhibition at the War Memorial Veterans Building (Room 102) on WWII in the Philippines and the Role of San Francisco until December 16. Exhibition open from 1PM to 4PM on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays
Keynote Speaker: Phil Gioia, a decorated veteran of the Vietnam War who served two tours under the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 82nd Airborne Division and the 5th Cavalry Division.
Phil Gioia currently serves as a Director of the WWII Memorial Foundation in Washington, DC.
Following the bombing of Pearl Harbor where the United States Navy suffered loss and destruction, Japan bombed the Philippines just a few hours later on December 8. A bitter war between the U.S. Army Forces in the Far East (USAFFE) and the Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) took place on the Bataan Peninsula until April 9, 1942 when the USAFFE forces, suffering from major disease and starvation and fighting without any air support, were forced to surrender. The USAFFE troops were able to delay the timetable of the Imperial Japanese Army but what ensued after was one of the greatest tragedies in WWII history. Approximately 10,000 Filipino and 650 American soldiers died when they were forced to walk to their prison camp at Camp O’Donnell some 60 miles away with no provisions for food, water, shelter or medicine. Those who could no longer go on were beaten, bayoneted, shot and some were even beheaded. This became known as the Bataan Death March. Another 20,000 Filipinos and 1,600 Americans died while inside the prison camp. The Philippines was not liberated until September 1945.
The Bataan Legacy Historical Society has been working with the California Department of Education since 2014 to include this segment of WWII history and other events in the Philippines in the U.S. history curriculum framework for Grade 11 (Chapter 16) and on July 14, 2016, it was approved by the California State Board of Education.