On Day 7 we rode from Subic Bay to Capas, Tarlac. Along the way we stopped at a church that survived twenty feet of wet ash from Mount Pinatubo, train stations where the men on the Bataan Death March were loaded and unloaded, and the Capas National Shrine, where thousands of Filipino and American prisoners of war perished.
Our first stop was San Guillermo Catholic Church, which is about twenty feet shorter than it used to be, due to the wet ash (lahar) from Mount Pinatubo, which erupted in 1991.
Next we visited the old San Fernando Train Station, which was where the Death Marchers were packed "like sardines" for a three to four hour, twenty mile train ride in unbelievable heat.
Next we stopped at Fort Stotsenberg. We were told that the Clark Museum is temporarily closed, and are extremely distraught to learn that what we considered to be the best WWII museum on the tour is in the process of being converted to one that appeals to investors in the Clark area.
This was followed by lunch at the Angeles VFW.
Next, a stop at the Clark Cemetery.
Then to the Capas Train Station, where the POWs were unloaded before their final march to Camp O'Donnell.
A brief stop at a Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor marker.
One stop we always make is at a marker dedicated by Malcolm Amos. This year, daughter Blythe and granddaughter Jasmine are on the tour.
Finally, the site of the infamous Camp O'Donnell, now called the Capas National Shrine, beginning with a stop at the last Death March marker and a walk along the last kilometer...
...and Camp O'Donnell, aka Capas National Shrine.
Tomorrow, equally infamous Cabanatuan POW camp site, now a memorial, and a bus ride back to Manila.
Steve and Marcia on the Rock