From Bataan to Freedom

The World War II Odyssey of Errett Louis Lujan Through the Death March and Five Japanese POW Camps


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About the Book

Errett Lujan served during World War II with the U.S. Army 200th/515th Coast Artillery (Anti-aircraft) Regiment in the Philippines, the largest regiment on the islands when the Japanese invaded just hours after Pearl Harbor. The regiment was credited as both the first and the last to fire on the enemy before surrendering. Lujan survived the invasion, the Bataan Death March and more than three years in POW camps.
After the war, he said little to his family about his harrowing experiences. Written by his daughter, this lovingly researched narrative pieces together the story of his service and his imprisonment, drawing on Lujan’s diaries and letters, and original interviews with 200th/515th survivors and former POWs.

About the Author(s)

Judy Reed is a retired archeologist living in Wake Forest, North Carolina. In addition to several published analyses in archeology, and short fictional stories in several volumes of County Lines—A Literary Journal, her brief history of Santa Fe in WWII is included in the 2010 anthology commemorating the 400th anniversary of the founding of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Bibliographic Details

Judy Reed
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 260
Bibliographic Info: 21 photos, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2024
pISBN: 978-1-4766-9241-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-5058-6
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vi
Preface 1
Introduction 5
1. The Far East Before World War II 7
2. Sign Me Up! 11
3. Antiaircraft Training at Ft. Bliss 18
4. Deployment to the Philippines 27
5. Combat Begins 39
6. Retreat to Bataan 52
7. Losing Ground 62
8. The Lull 69
9. War News Stirs the Home Front 75
10. Surrendered 82
11. In Enemy Hands 91
12. Wrestling with Defeat Stateside 97
13. A Parade of Death at Camp O’Donnell 102
14. Life at Cabanatuan and Bilibid Prison 108
15. Entering Japan 117
16. Settling into Camp at Mitsushima as a POW 125
17. The Worst Winter 134
18. Remaining Months at Mitsushima 147
19. Changing of the Guards 156
20. The First Leg at Kanose 168
21. The Last Leg at Kanose 190
22. Liberation 203
Epilogue 220
Appendix 223
Chapter Notes 227
References 239
Index 243