Back to Bataan - A Survivor's Story
Written by Rick Peterson
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Website Dedication
Author Rick Peterson



The Road to Bataan

The Bataan Death March

The San Fernando Train Ride

Camp O'Donnell

Clark Field Concentration Camp

Bilibid Prison

The Hell Ships


The Nomachi Express

Camp Nomachi

Surrender, Liberation, and Repatriation


University of Minnesota
Alf R. Larson
Recorded Oral History

Governor Pawlenty
State of the State Address Tribute

KSTP TV Newscasts

Duluth TV Newscasts

KTIS Radio Interview
Rick P./Paulette K.
Alf's Christian Faith

Alf's Letter to God

Alf R. Larson

In Memory:
Alf R. Larson
Star Tribune

US Representative
Erik Paulsen's Tribute

Alf Larson Day -
City of Crystal

Bataan Death March Route Map

Philippine Department of Tourism

Star Tribune:
March of Time
("Article of Interest" for 4-6 Grade Basic Skills Reading Test Prep)

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 Comment by Peg Meier on 03/20/2012 @ 13:51:02 GMT

Here\'s to Alf Larson and the other men on the horrendous death march. I was privileged to write about Alf in the Star Tribune 2000, thanks to Rick Peterson, who alerted me to Alf\'s story. My sympathy to his family and friends on his passing.

 Comment by Judith B. on 01/19/2012 @ 08:48:09 GMT

My wonderful uncle was on the death march and survived.  He had a hard time on his return and was but in a Veterans hospital for some time before he received a labotomy.  He lived with my folks and us kids from about 1950 on.  He was a delight to us as he thought and acted as we kids did.  He didn\'t talk about or remember the march or war years due to the surgery.  During the last week of his life he remembered some things and spoke about them.  I would love to hear from someone who knew him.  His name was James P. Palmer. Please write me at if you can help me know what he was like as a young man.  Thanks so much.

 Comment by Beth K. on 12/24/2011 @ 15:48:03 GMT

It was really enlightening to read this story.  My great uncle, Alvin Peterson, was on the Bataan Death March and did not survive.  My family has always said that they recognize him as one of the men in the photo of the soldiers that were stopping for a rest along the way.  He is the soldier with the injured face and legs crossed.  Thanks for continuing to remember these men.

 Comment by T. S. on 12/01/2011 @ 03:45:08 GMT

Thank you for this story. I pray it continues to be told. It is full of important lessons, first hand information, and most importantly the thoughts, feelings and insight of those who were there. It is so important to pass on the stories of the past, so that that we never forget. The Bataan Death March is remembered here in NM every year. Reading these words have only deepened my appreciation of those ceremonies. I know this story will help me bring deeper meaning to teaching about this integral part of history in my classroom. Thank you.

 Comment by Mary Chris Hines on 11/29/2011 @ 07:23:58 GMT

My uncle, Ralph Free, was on the death march, survived it and went on eventually to Cabanatuan camp. He worked in the library. Some of those cards from the Japanese Imperial Army made it to my grandmother. He died on one of the hell ships when it was bombed, as it wasn\'t marked. Thank you to all who fought to protect our freedom!

 Comment by Collins Duke on 09/01/2011 @ 19:09:37 GMT

My Uncle  Cpl John A Padgett 1913-2005 USAAF was on the death march and spent time in the Phillipines as a POW.
He was also placed on a \\"Hell Ship\\" and sent to japan where he was forced to do SLAVE labor in the Mitsubishi copper mine. After liberation he returned home to Pahokee Florida where he resumed his pre war job with the State Of Florida Road Dept. from where he retired.
He is in the book \\"Barb Wire Surgon\\"
He never hated the Japs, he said they were doing their duty and he was doing his and he was lucky to have survived.

 Comment by IN MEMORIAM - JUAN A. ANINAO - AUG. 20, 2011 on 08/22/2011 @ 13:49:33 GMT

My father, Juan A. Aninao, was a lieutenant in the Phillipine army in an artillery unit who survived the Bataan March AND his POW experience until repatriated. HE passed away peacefully with family on Aug. 21, 2001 in Columbus Ohio. He was 98 years old, survived by the Army nurse he met, loved and married, now age 89, and his four sons.  Is there anyone out there who knew him?

 Comment by cj pruitt on 08/17/2011 @ 21:14:54 GMT

my uncle blanchard e. pruitt, died in the death march, his photo always hung over the door when my grandparents were living my father ,before his death placed a memorial for his brother in  THOUGHT OF HIM ALL OF MY LIFE

 Comment by Angela Glenn on 08/17/2011 @ 12:20:55 GMT

My Uncle, whom I never met was in the Bataan Death March and died on one of the hell ships from shrapnel injuries. His name was Vernon Hobbs Jr. from Richmond Indiana. Very proud of his service to our country! U.S. Army!

 Comment by Cliff Wilson on 08/17/2011 @ 01:06:18 GMT

Would be looking for info on Leland Chandler formally of Fisher, Illinois, not sure about branch of service., He survived the Death March, however never talked much about it. Was a good friend in Fisher, would just like to know where he is now, thank you.


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All materials copyright © 2001 Rick Peterson.
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