10 WWII vets to be honored in Leyte rites

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  1. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    10 WWII vets to be honored in Leyte rites

    By Vicente Labro
    Inquirer Visayas

    10 WWII vets to be honored in Leyte rites - INQUIRER.net, Philippine News for Filipinos

    Posted date: October 17, 2009

    TACLOBAN CITY, Philippines—Ten World War II veterans in their 90s are to be honored on October 19 for being among the oldest of around 30 veterans who participated in the Search for Oldest Living World War II Veterans in Eastern Visayas.

    But the judges are still weighing the merits of the oldest of them all, a veteran more than 100 years old, who missed the deadline, however.

    The search was among the highlights of this year's 65th anniversary celebration of the Leyte Gulf Landings on October 20, 1944. On that day, General Douglas MacArthur and the Allied Forces landed on Red Beach in Palo, Leyte, and this signaled the start of the campaign to liberate the Philippines from Japanese occupation in World War II.

    Olive Tiu, regional director of the Philippine Information Agency, said Friday that the 10 veterans are to be honored during the Liberation Fiesta Leyte Awarding Ceremony at the DPWH compound in Palo, Leyte on Monday.

    Tiu, who was a member of the Board of Evaluators of the search, said the top winner was Isabelo Cabuenas Figueroa, 95, of Barangay 96, Calanipawan, Tacloban City.

    Figueroa is a recognized guerrilla of the 97th Infantry, 93rd Division who served from June 1, 1942 to March 20, 1946 with the rank of corporal, Tiu said.

    Tiu identified the other winners as Francisco R. Diaz, 94, of Tacloban City; Porferio Saño , 94, of Barangay Candao, Dulag, Leyte; Jesus P. Mahay, 93, of Basey, Samar; Felicisimo N. Gonzaga, 93, of Barangay Capirawan, Palo, Leyte; Calixtro Real, 93, of Barangay Bagacay, Tacloban City; Pedro Y. Echanez, 92, of Barangay Serum, Basey, Samar; Dimafiles E. Teopisto, 92, of Barangay Sta. Cruz, Palo, Leyte; Catalino Vivero, 91, of Barangay Capangihan, Tolosa, Leyte; and Marcelino Negro 91, of Tacloban City.

    Tiu said one World War II veteran, who is more than 100 years old, was also presented to the search organizers but it was already past the deadline.

    "We will soon be meeting to discuss this. Maybe we will just give him a special recognition, " she said without mentioning the name of the veteran.

    Figueroa, the winner of the search, will receive a cash prize of P50,000, a plaque of recognition and gift certificates during the awarding ceremony on Monday night. The nine runners-up will receive P10,000 each, plaques of recognition and gift certificates.

    The search was open to all living WWII veterans in Eastern Visayas who have valid papers showing his or her term of services during the war and other pertinent documents needed for validation by the Board of Evaluators.

    The Search for the Oldest Living WWI Veteran was spearheaded by the Rotary Club of Leyte Gulf and co-sponsored by the regional office of Department of Tourism with the prizes courtesy of DOT through Secretary Ace Durano and the Province of Leyte through Governor Carlos Jericho L. Petilla.

    The board of evaluators was composed of representatives from the Veterans Federation of the Philippines, Philippine Veterans Affairs Office, Office of the Provincial Government of Leyte, DOT, PIA and the Rotary of Leyte Gulf.

    The 65th Leyte Gulf Landings celebration on Tuesday has the theme, "A Salute to the Valor of Our Last Living Heroes."
     
  2. diddyriddick

    diddyriddick Active Member

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    Thanks for the heads-up, Syscom.
     
  3. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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  4. Thorlifter

    Thorlifter Well-Known Member

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  5. Pong

    Pong Active Member

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    Thanks for the info Syscom!

    -Arlo
     
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