21 gun salute for Kentucky Guard WWII tankers

MJO

By Sgt. Paul Evans, 103rd Brigade Support Battalion

A Kentucky National Guard color guard detail marches to the center of the football field during the opening ceremonies of the Mercer County High School football game Sept. 10. The Soldiers, assigned to 103rd Brigade Support Battalion attended the event in honor of the 68th anniversary of the Bataan Death March.

Harrodsburg, KY (September 17, 2010) – Sixty-six Kentucky National Guard Veterans were honored with a 21-gun salute at the start of the first Mercer County High School Titans football game of the season Sept. 10.

For the second consecutive year, fans paused to remember the 66 Tankers assigned to Company D, 192nd Tank Battalion who under Japanese captivity were forced to march 61-miles, in what is known as the Bataan Death March, to prison camps in the Philippines in 1942. Only 37 Kentucky Guardsman survived Japanese captivity.

Kentucky Guardsmen from the 103rd Brigade Support Battalion, based in Danville, provided a color guard and detail for the opening ceremonies.

Kentucky Guardsmen stand at attention prior to honoring Soldiers of Company D, 192nd Tank Battalion with a 21-gun salute. In honor of the 66th anniversary of the Bataan Death March, the Guardsmen from 103rd Brigade Support Battalion participated in the opening ceremonies for the Mercer County High School football game Sept. 10. The community honored the 66 Kentucky Guardsmen of Company D who endured a 61-mile march in the Philippines in 1942. Only 37 Kentucky Soldiers survived the march and imprisonment in Japanese POW camps.

“It is important that the Kentucky National Guard not forget our history, and it is so wonderful to see that the local communities don’t forget either,” said Kentucky National Guard Command Historian John Trowbridge.

“The citizens of Harrodsburg truly take to heart that they will never leave a fallen Soldier,” he said. “And it’s nice that our current Guardsmen from the 103rd get to participate in our living history and remembrance of those Soldiers who were forever changed because of the Bataan Death March.”

About kentuckyguard