On Saturday, March 1, the University of Dubuque ROTC detachment will host a Run for the Troops 5K Run/Walk in East Dubuque, IL. Run for the Troops is a timed 5K event to raise money for an ROTC cadet team to compete at the 2014 Bataan Memorial Death March in White Sands, New Mexico. This competition gives recognition to those who have fallen, and supports those veterans who endured the Battle of Bataan.
Unknown by many, the city of Manila (the capital of the Philippines that was home to American and Filipino troops) was attacked within 6-7 hours after the attack on Pearl Harbor. When Pearl Harbor was attacked, the Japanese seriously compromised the US Navy’s Pacific Fleet, which made the reinforcement mission to Manila impossible. From December 8 to January 7, 1942, the island of Manila received constant air strikes from the Japanese Air Force and, on January 7, 1942, the invasion of the island began the Battle of Bataan. From January 7 to April 4, 1942, the American and Filipino troops tried to resist Japanese forces but soon ran out of all supplies. During the battle, approximately 10,000 American and Filipino forces were killed in action, while over 20,000 were wounded. In addition to the casualties, 75,000 American and Filipino troops were taken as prisoners of war. Though suffering from combat wounds, disease, and malnutrition these prisoners were marched north over 80 miles to prisoner of war camps, a march that came to be known as the Bataan Death March. Lacking food and water, prisoners were beaten, shot, or bayoneted if they fell behind. Thousands of troops died even before reaching the war camps.
Approximately 16 cadets, along with Captain Clayton Degenhardt, assistant professor of military science and Sergeant Wesley Sturdivant, senior instructor of military science will compete in the 2014 Bataan Memorial Death March – a marathon routed through the high desert terrain of White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. It is conducted in honor of the heroic service members who defended the Philippine Islands during World War II, sacrificing their freedom, health, and their lives.
Carlos Flores, a senior ROTC cadet competed in the 2013 Memorial Death March, “The competition was the most humbling experience of my life, both physically and mentally. We hope to raise enough funds for this years cadets to share in this experience.”
When: March 1, 2014
Race Start: 10:00 a.m.
Where: Start at East Dubuque Elementary School, the route will go up to Dunlieth Court where participants will turn around and finish at the elementary school.
Registration: All participants may register at the East Dubuque Elementary School gym the day of the race. Participants must fill out a waiver (obtained at check in) prior to beginning the race. A parent of guardian must be present to sign a waiver if participant is under the age of 18.
Cost: Day of Race Registration fee:
$15.00 per race participant; $10.00 for race T-shirt
Additional monetary donations are greatly appreciated