Freedom Trail 2019 recognizes significant contribution of WWII vets

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga — Significant contributions of World War II freedom fighters were recognized during the Mariveles-San Fernando-Capas Freedom Trail 2019.

In an interview with Philippine Veterans Affairs Office-Veterans Memorial and Historical Division Head Ret. BGen Resty Aguilar, he said it is but fitting to honor our veterans for their services because we owe them the freedom we are now enjoying.

“During the World War II, one million Filipinos died defending our people. Of the remaining 19 million Filipinos at that time, majority served in the war directly or indirectly,” he said.

Through this death march tribute, Aguilar said they aim to get the present generations acquainted of our local heroes and at the same time tell us that because our veteran soldiers have relatives, all of us are somehow connected to the World War II.

“Those who have died during World War II have relatives which may be among us, while those who are still living are already in their late years. That is why we need to show and let them feel that their contributions will never be forgotten,” he said.

Of the 400,000 enlisted men and women during the World War II, Aguilar said that only 260,000 were given recognition by the Americans, and only about 5,000 were living.

The average death rate of World War II veterans is 300 monthly so there will only be less than a thousand veterans in the next three years.

Other pre-veteran activities include Ride for Valor, a bike tour competition that will traverse the death march route; as well as World War II symposium in Quezon City.

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