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The Battle of The Philippines 75 Years Later: A Veteran's Tale

with Mr. Dan Crowley

Thursday, November 10, 2016
1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
The Elliott School of International Affairs
1957 E Street, NW, Chung-wen Shih Conference Room, Suite 503
Washington, DC 20052

 

RSVP at go.gwu.edu/Crowley.


Mr. Dan Crowley, 94, a former POW of Japan and veteran of the Battle for Defense of the Philippines will be in Washington to attend the President's Veterans Day breakfast. Crowley was sent to the Philippines as a member of the Army Air Corps in 1941 untrained and unarmed. When the Japanese attacked the Philippines on December 8, 1941, he fought an improvised air defense at Nichols Field near Manila. The airmen were moved to Bataan to join the US Army Infantry in the Battle of the Points repelling three waves of the Japanese invasion. He avoided the Bataan Death March after Bataan's surrender by swimming and clinging to life rafts to Corregidor Island fortress where he engaged in shore defense with the 4th Marines. He was surrendered on May 6, 1942. As a POW he worked on the infamous air field on Palawan Island. He was shipped to Japan in early 1944 to be slave laborer, thus missing the Palawan Massacre of 150 of his fellow POWs on December 14, 1944. First taken to a Hitachi copper mine, he was liberated in September 1945 from a copper mine near Tokyo owned by the Furukawa Company, today a major multinational. 

In 2014, he participated in a Japanese reconciliation program began in 2010 for former American POWs to visit Japan. Crowley is active in telling the history of the American POW experience with Imperial Japan. In 2013, he persuaded the Connecticut state legislature to name the bridge on Route 185 in Simsbury the “Bataan Corregidor Memorial Bridge” in memory of those soldiers who fought alongside Crowley and who lost their lives at the Battle of Bataan and the Battle of Corregidor.

 


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