Monday, January 28, 2013

Death March

Second World War, Philippines.  Many stories were told of the heroism of Filipinos around the time when Filipino combatants were marching their way from Bataan to Capas, Tarlac.  Tired and weary of the long walk under the blazing summer heat, soldiers are seen falling from the ranks and shot by Japanese occupation troops.  Filipino civilians by the road could not resist giving water to these poor brave warriors.  A risky act which cause some their life as the enemies sometimes shoot civilians point blank.  One touching story was told of how an old woman risked her life in trying to help one Filipino trooper.  As civilians helplessly watched the soldiers marched to their death, one fell down by the road.  Instinctively, people came to the rescue of the poor fighter when a Japanese officer \saw them and fired his rifle to the air.  The Filipinos backed out of fear for their life, but one courageous old woman came down quickly to the aid of the fallen soldier.  So daring was her act that even the Japanese officer stood stunned while everyone watched silently as the old woman poured water from a pitcher and gave it to the Filipino combatant.  Then slowly, she helped the militiaman to his feet and smiled at him.  Not yet satisfied, she poured another glass of water but this time, she handed it over to the Japanese officer and gave him a deep and rather long bow bestowed only to a man of honor.  The old woman left unharmed.

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