Saturday, February 20, 2021

Pacific Heroes Day



Ned Lamont, the Governor of Connecticut, declared January 4, 2021

PACIFIC WAR HEROES DAY

As of this writing, the Proclamation has yet to be put online.


Behind this honor, was a ceremony for Daniel Crowley who was a prisoner of war held by Imperial Japan after being surrendered on Corregidor in May 1942. On the 4th, Dan finally received is Combat Infantryman Badge, POW Medal, and previously unknown promotion to Sergeant.


You can watch the ceremony above and find out more though the press coverage of the Department of Defense ceremony held on that day at the Connecticut Air National Guard Base


ADBC-MS Press Advisory, December 31, 2020 


U.S. Department of Defense

 

 




  • Commemorating WWII - Veteran Vignette

In process, to be posted at https://www.defense.gov/Explore/Spotlight/WWII/ 


Connecticut Air National Guard’s 103rd Airlift Wing Facebook Coverage  

 

 


Public Media


Friday, January 01, 2021

Historic Ceremony for POW of Japan

On January 4, 2021, Simsbury, Connecticut resident Daniel Crowley, 98, will finally receive his Combat Infantry Badge (CIB) for his service with the Provisional Army Air Corps Infantry Regiment defending the Bataan Peninsula in the Philippines against the invading Imperial Japanese forces in the early months of WWII in 1942. Until this ceremony, the U.S. Army has refused to confer the CIB to the provisional soldiers on Bataan.

Dan will also receive his Prisoner of War Medal and recognition of his previously unknown 1945 promotion to Sergeant at a noon ceremony at Connecticut’s Bradley Air National Guard Base presided over by Gregory J. Slavonic, Under Secretary of the Navy, PTDO vice Acting. At the ceremony a representative of Dan’s former employer Northwestern Mutual will announce a donation in his honor to the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor Memorial Society.


Under Secretary Slavonic with his Executive Assistant CAPT G. J. Leland, a former commanding officer of the multipurpose amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5,) worked with the Secretary of the Army to research and confirm all the awards and promotions Dan had earned in WWII.


Dan arrived in the Philippines in the spring of 1941 with the U.S. Army Air Corps. Within hours of the December 7, 1941 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the military airfields in the Philippines were also destroyed. With surviving airmen, he was sent to defend the Bataan Peninsula. Dan avoided the Bataan Death March in April 1942 by swimming to Corregidor and fighting with the 4th Marines. He became a POW with the surrender of all the Philippines in May of that year. Dan was liberated from a POW slave labor copper mining camp in Japan in September 1945. 

 

The event will be livestreamed on the Connecticut Air National Guard’s 103rd Airlift Wing Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/103aw


A leading voice for Pacific War veterans and their families, the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor Memorial Society (ADBC-MS) promotes education and scholarship about the POW experience in the Pacific, supports programs of reconciliation and understanding, and advocates for a Congressional Gold Medal for the POWs of Japan. The ADBC-MS is the point of contact for all official U.S. government activities affecting American POWs of Japan. 

Over 26,000 Americans were POWs of Imperial Japan. There were more than 200 from Connecticut. Nearly 11,000 died in POW camps, aboard “hell ships,” or as slave laborers for Japanese companies. 

Friday, December 25, 2020

Merry Christmas

 


Ronald Searle (3 March 1920 – 30 December 2011) is perhaps the best known of the artists who were POWs of Japan. The British illustrator said that his POW experience on the Thai Burma Death Railroad "directed" the rest of his life. Many of his wartime drawings documenting the horror are in the Imperial War Museum. In 1986, he published Ronald Searle: To the Kwai and Back, War Drawings 1939–1945.

Sunday, November 29, 2020

Why was Imperial Japan so cruel?



University of Washington, Seattle Professor Daniel Chirot explores in an October 27, 2020 lecture, the Ideologies of Racial Superiority and Purity: Why Did Germany and Japan Engage in Such Extreme Mass Murder During World War II?

Although there were differences between Germany’s effort to wipe out Jews (and others) and Japan’s massacres (death through work and human experimentation) there was a common ideological basis for these outrages. What lay behind Nazi ideology and Japan’s aggressive militarism, and why were they so vicious? A comparison helps put what happened in perspective and shows why we cannot exclude the possibility that something like this could happen again.

Among the common traits between Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan were a deep sense of racial and ideological superiority. The difference was that the Germans were ideologically genocidal whereas the Japanese were negligently so. The Germans wanted to eliminate certain peoples while the Japanese were simply indifferent to the welfare of their subjugated and enslaved.

Friday, September 25, 2020

Gold Star Families Remembrance Week

This week, September 20th – 26th, is Gold Star Families Remembrance Week, which honors the families of fallen service members and recognizes the sacrifices made by the family members of veterans who died in the line of duty.

The first tanker to die in WWII was a son of African American Kentucky sharecroppers. Pvt. Robert Brooks of the 192nd Tank Battalion was killed by a Japanese bomb on December 8, 1941 at Clark Field.

Cleveland Wright (b. 1931, d. 1992), U.S. Air Force,
“We Regret To Inform You,” 1979. Oil on Canvas.
Collection of the National Veterans Art Museum.
All rights reserved.

Saturday, September 19, 2020

Ceremony and Presidential Proclamation for POW/MIA Day

Navy Rear Adm. Darius Banaji, deputy director of the Defense Prisoner of War/Missing in Action Accounting Agency, hosts a moving ceremony on POW/MIA Recognition Day at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, Sept. 18, 2020.

President's Proclamation on National POW/MIA Recognition Day, 2020

  Issued on: September 18, 2020

Throughout our Nation’s history, America’s sons and daughters have heroically safeguarded our precious freedoms and defended the cause of liberty both at home and abroad.  On National POW/MIA Recognition Day, we remember the more than 500,000 prisoners of war who have endured incredible suffering and brutality under conditions of extraordinary privation, and the tens of thousands of our patriots who are still missing in action.  Although our Nation will never be able to fully repay our debt to those who have given so much on our behalf, we commemorate their bravery and recommit to working for their long-suffering families who deserve answers and solace for their missing loved ones.

Today, I join a grateful Nation in honoring those POWs who faithfully served through extreme hardship and unimaginable physical and emotional trauma.  Their lives and resilience reflect the best of the American Spirit, and their immeasurable sacrifices have ensured the blessings of freedom for future generations.  On this day, we also reaffirm our unceasing global efforts to obtain the fullest possible accounting of our MIA personnel.  The search, recovery, and repatriation of MIA remains help bring closure to families bearing the burden of the unresolved fate of their loved ones.  That is why in 2018, I worked to secure the historic repatriation of remains from North Korea, and why we are continually working to bring more home from around the world.  My Administration will never waver in fulfilling our country’s obligation to leave no service member behind.

This year, as we commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II and reflect upon both the 70th anniversary of the start of the Korean War and the 45th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War, we pause to recognize the men and women who were held as POWs or deemed MIA in these conflicts against repressive ideologies.  These service members and civilians, many from the Greatest Generation, deserve a special place of honor in the hearts of all Americans because of their selfless devotion, unflinching courage, and unsurpassed dedication to our cherished American values.

On September 18, 2020, our Nation’s citizens will look to the iconic black and white flag as a powerful reminder of the service of America’s POWs and service members who have gone MIA.  This flag, especially when flying high above our military installations abroad, conveys the powerful message of American devotion to the cause of human liberty and our commitment to never forget the brave Americans lost defending that liberty.  On this National POW/MIA Recognition Day, our Nation takes a special moment to pay tribute to those who endured the horrors of enemy captivity and those lost in service to our country.  Our Nation will continue to be resolute in our relentless pursuit of those remains of service members who have yet to return home from war and our steadfast promise to their families that their loved ones will never be forgotten.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 18, 2020, as National POW/MIA Recognition Day.  Together with the people of the United States, I salute all American POWs who, in the presence of great dangers and uncertainties, valiantly honored their duty to this great country.  Let this day also serve as a reminder for our Nation to strengthen our resolve to account for those who are still missing and provide their families long-sought answers.  I call upon Federal, State, and local government officials and private organizations to observe this day with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this seventeenth day of September, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fifth.


Friday, September 18, 2020

Remembering the men of Maywood and all the POWs of Japan


IN HONOR OF 
MAYWOOD BATAAN DAY AND NATIONAL POW/MIA 
RECOGNITION DAY


HON. DANNY K. DAVIS 
of Illinois 
in the House of Representatives 
Wednesday, September 16, 2020 

Mr. DANNY K. DAVIS of Illinois. Madam Speaker, today I rise to tell my colleagues during this week that ends with National POW/MIA Recognition Day about my district's 78-year old Maywood Bataan Memorial Day tradition. This service honors the men from the village of Maywood, Illinois who became prisoners of war after fighting from December 7, 1941 to April 9, 1942 against invading Imperial Japanese forces in the Philippines. 

The men of Maywood were members of Company B of the federated Illinois National Guard 33rd Tank Company, 33rd Infantry Division based at the town's Armory.  On November 25, 1940, they became part of the 192nd Tank Battalion of the U.S. Army. In October 1941, 89 men from Company ``B'' left the United States for the Philippine Islands. They arrived in the Philippine Islands on November 20, 1941--Thanksgiving Day. On December 8, the war started and the Japanese attacked. 

These Illinois tankers fought valiantly on the Bataan Peninsula with little food, medicine, fuel, or ammunition. Relief from the United States never came. Malaria, scurvy, and dysentery reached epidemic proportions. On April 9, 1942, Bataan was surrendered. The following day, some 85,000 American and Filipino soldiers, as Japanese captives, all became victims of the greatest atrocity of the Pacific War: the Bataan Death March. A seemingly endless line of sick and starving men began their 85 mile trip up from the tip of Bataan to Camp O'Donnell in central Luzon. More than 12,000 died en route. 

Survivors of the March endured three and a half years of death camps, brutal labor, and untold abuse. Many were taken to Japan aboard hell ships to be slave laborers for Japanese companies. Of the more than 10,000 Americans taken prisoner on Bataan, between 6,000 and 7,000 died. Of the 89 men of Company ``B'' who left the U.S. in 1941, only 43 would return from the war. 

This is the first year that the Memorial, which was scheduled for September 13, has had to be postponed. I ask my fellow representatives to join me in commending the hard work and dedication of Maywood Bataan Day Organization President Col. Richard A. McMahon, Jr. and his Board of Directors. And on this Friday, September 18, National POW/MlA Recognition Day may we all pause to remember the men and women of Bataan who gave so much in the fight against tyranny.

For more information about the tankers on Bataan see The Bataan Project.