Diary of Ramon A. Alcaraz

May 31, 1942

It is reported that the transfer of the about 6,000 surviving American Bataan Death Marchers from the POW Camp O’Donnell to Cabanatuan is about completed. The new POW Camp in Cabanatuan was the former mobilization and training center of the USAFFE 91st Div. before the war and have better facilities. Judge Roldan informed me the Corregidor POWs that were transported by ship to Manila were paraded and marched to their destinations. Filipino POWs marched to Tutuban Railroad Station, loaded in the train for Capas. The about 3,000 American POWs marched from the Pier to Bilibid Prison in Azcarraga where they are temporarily detained but gradually transferred to Cabanatuan. Judge Roldan speculated that the Americans were transferred from O’Donnell to prevent them further seeing the distressing 500 Filipino POWs dying daily adjacent to their Camp. American POWs death rate in O’Donnell is reportedly much lower at 60 per day.

Our situation at Malolos POW Camp is comparably better than Capas. We were originally 20 POWs last April 10, and increased by 3 to 23 later. Although there were few malaria and dysentery cases, the provincial health officers took good care of us –no death so far. Our camaraderie is stronger and morale good. Our hope for ultimate redemption springs eternal.

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>