Icot: Document unique stories of local war heroes
TOLOSA,Leyte- Governor Jericho Petilla reiterated the call to document the unique stories of war veterans, particularly their own personal experiences during World War II, in order to preserve the lessons and inspirations that the war has brought to the Filipino people.
This was stressed by Gov. Petilla during the 67th Signal Day celebration in Brgy. Telegrafo, Tolosa, Leyte, a day that was a prelude to the Liberation of the Filipino people during the Second World War, two days before the actual landing of Gen. Douglas MacArthur.
“I very much fear that their stories will never be told again in the next generations because many of our younger population these days barely know about World War II,” Petilla said during his commemorative address.
He further noted that each year, the number of veterans to whom the annual commemoration is offered, are fast diminishing.
Gov. Petilla added that for the younger generation to truly appreciate and “never forget” the events that led to the liberation of the country, there is a need to document all the recollections of war veterans who live to this day.
The governor, together with Palo Mayor Remedios “Matin” Petilla, who is also the commissioner for Visayas of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines, joined the heirs of Scout Valeriano Abello, Antero Junia Sr. and Vicente Tiston in paying tribute to the three heroes, through a wreath laying ceremony at the Abello Monument in Telegrafo, Tolosa.
Families and heirs of these three Signal Day heroes also paid tribute to their forefathers where they unanimously called for peace and unity as well as to “continue remembering the heroism of (their) forefathers and the Filipino soldiers during World War II.”
As per account of the direct heirs during the commemorative program held in honor of their fathers, the scouts used the scouts signs to request the incoming Allied Forces on October 18, 1944, not to bomb the shorelines from Abuyog to Tacloban City as thousands of civilians are in hiding. Instead, they revealed to the Allied Forces the exact locations and hideouts of the Japanese soldiers.
After the Signal Day in Tolosa, October 19 will highlight the commemorative rites at Dulag Hill 120 where the flag of the United States was first raised. While October 20 is the annual commemorative rites of the Leyte Gulf Landings at the McArthur Park in Palo town.
President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino will be the guest of honor and speaker during this year’s 67th Leyte Landings Commemoration.
By Ahlette Reyes
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