August 2, 1945, Thursday

We began a Novena to San Judas Tadeo, my wife’s favorite saint. She used to go to the Cathedral to pray before the saint. Paredes is the leader. He also has been going to confession. We were wondering whether he had left the Masonry in which he was an ex-grand Master and one of the most prominent.

It was reported that Cummings, when he was Attorney General, rendered the opinion that collaborators would lose their citizenship. The best legal talents are here in this camp and they all said that they could not understand how Cummings could render such an opinion.

We received another version of the instructions of Pres. Quezon. It was in the form of a cablegram to Col. Nakar, Commander of the USAFFE forces in Northern Luzon, which reads as follows:

For Gov. Quirino and Gov. Visayas, Masaya, Isabela. In reply your telephone re instructions to you in case occupation your province by Japanese, you must remain in your post to maintain peace and order and protect civilian population until Japanese take over government authority. In case you asked by Japanese to continue performing functions you should use discretion considering best interests your people but should be sure no personal or official aid and comfort to enemy especially its military activities. Municipal police should continue maintaining peace and order until relieved by Japanese but Constabulary should immediately join nearest Philippine Army detachment. In case you withdraw to hills or mountains keep in touch with Voice of Freedom, or another station in occupied territory or K.G.E.I. San Francisco for possible further contact with Commonwealth Government. Quezon.

The telegram was dated Washington, April 18, 1942.

Above is substantially the same as other instructions given, which I have previously mentioned.

This day the Lieutenant came with an American who was looking for me. I became rather nervous. It turned out that he was Mr. L. C. Ashmore of the C.I.C. I thought he came to investigate me. He introduced himself and he seemed to be very nice. He said that the Manila office had sent him a letter to ask me certain questions on Imports and Exports during the Japanese occupation and also certain business practices of the Japanese. He gave me an outline of what he wanted. I immediately prepared a memorandum on the different matters contained in his memorandum and, on August 15th when he came back, I handed it to him. I kept copies of his memorandum and mine.

On account of the Luz’s illness, we have been recalling his many acts. Zulueta recounts that one afternoon, Luz called Alunan and himself, and with Luz’s forefinger on his lips to indicate that they should make no noise, he led them to a corner. Luz said he had very important news and Alunan and Zulueta became very anxious to know what they were. Suddenly he stood up and sang “Pregunta a Las Estrellas.”

Shortly after his arrival, he asked that we hold a special prayer for the soul of his mother as it was the anniversary of her death. He prepared a prayer which he said with full devotion. But his prayer was that Madrigal give his millions to our cause.

The next day he called us all to a meeting. He said he had very important news to transmit. Since we did not know him very well then, we were very eager to hear what he had to say. After a long preliminary which kept us more anxious, he broke down and began to cry. He announced that he was suffering from malaria and he hoped that we would not mind if he stayed with us. In chorus, we told him that we had no objection.


January 26,1943

After my Taisho Training visit in Solano three days ago, I instructed SA Pablo Naval to see me that afternoon in my office in Bayombong.  In the privacy of my office, I instructed him “as soon as ready” to proceed to Baguio area where our Grla. Comdr., L.Col. Enriquez is “laying low in hiding” to give the following report: “Peace and order in Vizcaya is good as the guerrilla units there are under my complete control; my rapport with Japanese military authorities is also good with their blessing on our neighborhood association idea wherein Taisho Instructions were given twice, and the authorized assemblies gave us opportunity to further military training.  When I arrived in Bayombong early last Nov., there were a dozen American POWs that included L.Col. E. Warner, original 14th Inf. CO and L.Col. Theodore Kalakuka, emissary of Gen. Wainright in the surrender process after the fall of Corregidor.  Warner surrendered to Kalakuka and their combined efforts in collaboration with the Chief of Police of Jones, Isabela caused the capture of L.Col. G. Nakar, who, I understand, was executed.  Early last month two American POWs, L.Col. Kalakuka and a Lt. Ziegler, died of dysentery and malaria and were buried at the local Catholic Cemetery.  Before the end of last month all American POWs were transferred to Cabanatuan POW Camp.”  Since this report will be delivered verbally, I asked Naval to repeat what the message is and to my satisfaction, he covered all subjects verbatim.

Today, my being Actg. Sr. Inspector of Vizcaya ended with the arrival of Inspector Sergio Laurente ’21.  After a formal turnover this afternoon, I accompanied him to the Provincial Capitol to pay a social call on Gov. Quirino and other officials.  He was received cordially as he has a pleasing personality.  At the start of the war, Laurente was provincial PC Comdr. of Ilocos Sur and when the Japanese landed there Dec. 10,1941, he was taken by surprise, immediately captured and earned the distinction of being the first Filipino USAFFE to become POW.  From the way I size him up, I think we will have a very pleasant camaraderie although he graduated from the old PCA nineteen years before I graduated from PMA in 1940.


November 30, 1942

Since I reported to my post as BC Inspector, peace and order in Vizcaya have been good which makes my job easy. The BC have peacetime routine sending patrols to outlaying barrios to contact our people for us to know how they feel — they do not like the Japanese. The present condition is brought by the surrender or capture of guerrilla leaders like LCols. Warner and Nakar plus specific instructions from Gen. MacArthur for the guerrillas to lay low. LCol. Enriquez, who took command after the capture of Nakar, moved out of the province after my arrival leaving me two of his companies that are laying low.

The Guerrilla Idea originally came from USAFFE HQ in Corregidor that when Gen. MacArthur and party escaped Corregidor via PT Boats last March 11, at the same night, Q-113 under Lt. S. Nuval transported a special US Army Commando to inaugurate guerrilla operations landing them at Zambales Coast. They found their way to Mt. Pinatubo where LCol. C. Thorpe, Capt. B. Anderson and Lt. R. Lapham established their Hq to recruit natives. After the surrender, Bataan escapees like Maj. Moses & Noble, Capt. R. Volckman & D. Blackburn of the 11th Div. managed to organize guerrilla units among the Igorots in Mt. Province. Two other Bataan escapees, Capt. Joe Barker and Lt. Edwin Ramsey of the 26th Cav. ended up in Western Bulacan where they met another escapee, Capt. Alejo Santos of the 31st Div. Later, Ramsey went to Pangasinan where he organized his unit. All these guerrilla organizations were going on quietly all over the entire country and the many hundred recruits voluntarily joining is an indication on how the people feel against the Japanese. After organizing, the units went on secret training waiting for further developments.

 


November 24, 1942

With the concurrence of my BC Sr Inspector, I formed an Intelligence Unit initially composed of BC Sgt. Norberto Aquino (Nautical School Grad), Guillermo Aban, Fernando Asuncion & Pablo Naval. Aban, Asuncion & Naval are key members of the underground 14th Inf, considered civilian informers I issued official I.D. Cards to facilitate our contacts. Sgt. Aquino is my close confidant but does not know the three civilian informers are underground members.

Today, Lt. Leandro Rosario paid me a courtesy call telling me he is a surrendered former Intelligence O. of LCol. Nakar 14th Inf., now working with Gov. Demetrio Quirino with a group that were former GANAP followers of Benigno Ramos an anti-govt subversives during the Commonwealth years. Lt. Rosario said he and his group are working for peace and order and wants to coordinate with the BC.

Yesterday, Mrs. Reyes found a house of the Sadang family available by Dec. 15 for rent. I found the house spacious with three bedrooms, big sala and dining room so I signed a month to month lease at P35.00 per month. The house is only a block from my office, in an excellent neighborhood in front of the governor’s residence.


November 10, 1942

This morning, I made a courtesy call on the N. Vizcaya Kempei-tai Chief, Lt. Kumatsusaki at his office.  I was warmly received knowing we are expected to work together on peace and order.  When I asked him if he knew Maj. Suguiyama and Lt. Fukushima, he said he worked with both of them before specially Fukushima.  Our rapport became better after I said Lt. Fukushima is my friend. I then asked him what problems we have on peace and order and he said since the capture of Col. Nakar ’32 in Isabela, head of the Grla. Gp. operating in Cagayan Valley, and the death of Capt. Agustin Prudenciado ’33, peace and order have improved as the Grlas. have disbanded.  However, he mentioned remnants under certain Lts. Quines, Dumlao, Dela Cruz, and Navarro probably under Major Enriquez in his list.  He also mentioned three American officers  namely Cols. Moses & Noble as well as Capt. Ralph Praeger with another group in his wanted list. I said I am new in the area and don’t know anything but appreciated all the info he gave me.  I assured him of my cooperation for the sake of peace and order for our people, with the hope that we can work together closely by exchanging information. Finally, when I asked Lt. Kumatsusaki who is the overall boss of the Kempei-tai to whom he reports, he said he is Col. Akiro Nagahama whose HQ is in Manila.

I noted that the Kempei-tai office in Bayombong has only three uniformed military and the five others I met were civilian Japanese men who probably lived in the Phil. before as they can speak Ilocano and Tagalog.  They were all formally introduced to me by Lt. Kumatsusaki.

Nov. 7 is a Saturday and I formally took command of 1st N. Vizcaya BC Co. from 5″ Cl. Insp. M. Alvarez.  I conducted Saturday Inspection of the Co. and took my lunch at the Company Mess with the EM.  After lunch, I gave a few remarks regarding services for our people during our present trying time. Our BC Company occupies the former St. Mary’s High School with spacious buildings and parade grounds.

I am still staying in Bayombong Hotel but am looking for a house to rent. Today, being a Sunday, I went to Church to thank my Divinor for All His Blessings and Guidance in being safe here.  After Mass, I met the Parish Priest Fr. Lambrecht, a Belgian who is outspokenly pro-American after learning I am a USAFFE Officer who saw action in Bataan and was a POW.


November 8, 1942

When I reported to my new BC post three days ago (Nov. 5), needless to say N. Vizcaya BC Sr. Inspector Antonio C. Diano ’19 my superior and BCA classmate, was so happy to welcome me at his office where we had a private conversation.  He knew my Lanao assignment but I have to tell my “malaria story” that allowed me to escape from reporting there but said nothing on how I was sent to Bayombong. He briefed me about our BC Co. and expressed his desire that I relieve the present CO (Insp. M. Alvarez) who belongs to the first BCA graduates and no previous military experience. He commented that we are lucky to be assigned to a sparsely populated province with a temperate climate like Baguio whose peace and order is manageable now that the guerrillas are on the run since the capture of Col. Nakar ’32 and death of Capt. Agustin Prudenciado ’33.

Nov. 6, a Friday, Sr Inspector Diano accompanied me to the offices of the provincial officials and introduced me to the provincial governor Demetrio Quirino, Prov. Fiscal Atty. Madarang and Judge of the Court of 1st Instance, Nicanor Roxas and the Mayor of Bayombong, Victor Bobila, who happened to be there. This serves as my courtesy call also on them and I was welcomed warmly by everyone.  Sr. Insp. Diano, however, warned me to be careful of all of them as they are appointed by the Japanese administration whose loyalty is uncertain, great remarks by a USAFFE comrade I shall remember.

Nov. 7 is a Saturday and I formally took command of 1st N. Vizcaya BC Co. from 5″ Cl. Insp. M. Alvarez.  I conducted Saturday Inspection of the Co. and took my lunch at the Company Mess with the EM.  After lunch, I gave a few remarks regarding services for our people during our present trying time.  Our BC Company occupies the former St Mary’s High School with spacious buildings and parade grounds.

I am still staying in Bayombong Hotel but am looking for a house to rent.  Today, being a Sunday, I went to Church to thank my Divinor for All His Blessings and Guidance in being safe here.  After Mass, I met the Parish Priest Fr Lambreth, a Belgian who is outspokenly pro-American after learning I am a USAFFE Officer who saw action in Bataan and was a POW.


November 5, 1942

Go Beng’s Truck came to pick me up at 0830 three days ago (Nov 3) at my Tennessee residence for my trip to N. Vizcaya. It was a pleasant surprise to see Mr. Go Beng himself who told me he was going to Tuguegarao. Before bidding my wife goodbye I introduced her to Mr. Go Beng, then started our trip with me seated in the front seat with Mr. Go Beng and the driver. There were five other passengers accommodated with the merchandise area. I developed a good rapport with Mr. Go Beng who owns six trucks trading merchandise from Manila to Cagayan Valley. Trucks like he has are rare with shortage of fuel and travel very slow with the mixture of alcohol and gasoline as fuel. We finally arrived in San Jose, N. Ecija (after a short stop in Cabanatuan for lunch) at 5:00 P.M. or eight hours that normally only takes four. We stayed overnight in San Jose and early the following day, Nov. 4, we were climbing the rugged Cordillera Mt. towards Santa Fe, the first town of Vizcaya. The area we just passed is an excellent place for ambuscade, reason for not traveling at night. We then passed the town of Aritao and had lunch in Bambang after which we proceeded to Bayombong arriving at Bayombong Hotel at 1400H.

While checking at the hotel, the Manager, Mr. Verzosa, handed me a note from Lt. Col. (not Major anymore) Manuel Enriquez that he wanted to see me ASAP. I have an excellent accommodation and at 1700H, Pablo Naval knocked at my door and once inside, told me the bad news that L.Col. Nakar and his men were captured by the Japanese at Jones, Isabela area and that L.Col. Enriquez took over the command while the rest of the units are on the run. Naval told me that Enriquez wanted to see me ASAP and since he knows where he is, I agreed to go as soon as it gets dark. He had a caretela ready and took off towards Solano as soon as dusk fell. At barrio Bonfal, we debarked, walked about two kms westward and arrived at the place where I will meet Enriquez. It is 9:00pm and I waited another half hour at this place which is at the foot of the mountain, where a group of men that included Enriquez arrived.

Manolo Enriquez was excited and embraced me like a long lost brother. Needless to say I was very happy and grateful. He then introduced me as Major Alcaraz, handing me my appointment with the 14th Inf. He said it was unfortunate Col. Nakar was captured but we have to carry on the mission. I was to Command the new N. Vizcaya Bn. to compose the company under Capt. Guillermo Aban and the company under Capt. Fernando Asuncion together with the BC Company. Capts. Aban and Asuncion were introduced to me and then we moved to another room for confidential intructions and info that include the fact that the 14th Inf. is on the run, the need for secrecy discipline and that he is moving his HQ to Baguio area. I demanded that there be no written communications, that messages between him and me would be transmitted verbatim by an intelligent loyal courier for which Pablo Naval was agreed upon. It was also agreed that our initial activities are to lay low, organize and collect intelligence while I familiarize myself with the people and terrain of N. Vizcaya.

I stayed the entire evening catching up events with L.Col. Enriquez as we slept on adjacent cots. He told me he will inform other unit Comdrs. in the Field like Maj. Romulo Manriquez, Capt. Patricio Dumlao and Lt. Luis Casumpang about me and the new Bn. I will command. He also mentioned that Don Juan Elizalde is our Financial Supporter and that other associates like Col. Alfredo Ramirez and Capt. Juan Calvo may contact me later.

Early this morning, after breakfast, Pablo Naval escorted me back to barrio Bonfal where the caretela was waiting and I went back alone to Bayombong Hotel. After lunch, I dressed up with my BC uniform as 5th Class Inspector, and reported to HQ, BC Bayombong whose Senior Inspector Antonio C. Diano ’19 is so happy to welcome me. I found that we have a BC Company composed mostly of former PA and Phil. Scout soldiers many of whom are Bataan veterans. I like my assignment here specially the temperate climate like Baguio. My reporting formally to this BC post makes my written obligations signed as a POW fulfilled. I feel free again!


October 27, 1942

My San Lazaro Hospital malingering helped me escape that Mindanao assignment and in the process, my providential contact with my former PMA mentor Maj. Manuel P. Enriquez, ExO. 14t Inf. Guerillas of LCol. G. Nakar, made possible my new assignment in Bayombong, N. Vizcaya.  I look forward to going to my new post, specially what Maj. Enriquez has in store for me.  I plan to go to Bayombong alone leaving my family in Manila to adjust to my new environs but my problem is transportation.  It is a problem nationwide. There are no public transportation anywhere since the Japanese occupation.

Last night, a man visited me at home with a note of introduction from Maj. Enriquez saying that bearer, Pablo Naval, is his man from N. Vizcaya that may be of help.  With regards to transportation, Mr. Naval confirmed no public transportation but only private business traders using trucks are available going to Cagayan Valley.  And so today, Mr. Naval accompanied me to Azcarraga St. and helped me book with Mr. Go Beng, a chinese merchant leaving Manila Nov. 3 arriving Bayombong Nov. 4.  Mr. Naval also suggested that I check in Bayombong Hotel on my arrival there as he will make reservations for me when he returns by the end of the month.  Now that my transportation problem is solved, I started preparing for my journey to Cagayan Valley where the 14th Infantry is operating.  Before Mr. Naval departed I asked him if  it is possible I could meet Maj. Enriquez Nov. 4 or 5, or before I report to the Senior Inspector, BC in Bayombong who does not know my arrival date.


October 11, 1942

Being a Sunday today, I got a special half day evening pass starting 1500H  from the San Lazaro Hospital to visit my sick wife with the provision that I will return immediately should there be a surprise check by BC HQ.  Providentially, after alighting from my bus at Taft Ave. corner Tennessee St., walking eastward towards where my wife resides, I was surprised to see Maj. Manuel P. Enriquez (Manolo) our Tactical O. at PMA, walking in opposite direction near Colorado St. corner.  Manolo seems surprised too to see me and since my wife’s residence is only a block away, I invited him to come with me for a private talk.

I knew Maj. Enriquez is not supposed to be in Manila as he is the  ExO of LCol. G. Nakar of the 14th Inf. Guerillas in Cagayan Valley. After arriving home and finding my wife’s fever had subsided, Manolo and I secluded ourselves in a private room.  Maj. Enriquez told me he is on a secret mission for the 14th Inf.  I told him I was paroled to the BC and my predicament is that I refused to go to my assignment in Lanao.  He claimed to have a man at BC HQ named Maj. Pedro Jaminola.  Manolo then asked me, “If I can have you assigned in N. Vizcaya where my units are, are you willing to work with us?”  Without hesitation I answered in the affirmative.  He said he will contact Maj. Jaminola accordingly and that he will be in touch with me later after he got my wife’s address and phone number.  With that understanding, Manolo left.  I am very hopeful that Maj. Enriquez can do something to help me out of my predicament.  Meantime, I stayed with my wife who felt much better by midnight when I returned to the hospital as if nothing happened.