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Hunter’s ROTC

Hunters-ROTC Guerrillas, “The Unsurrendered”

The Hunters ROTC was a Filipino guerrilla unit active during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines, and was the main anti-Japanese guerrilla group active in the area near the Philippine capital of Manila It was created upon the dissolution of the Philippine Military Academy.

Cadet Terry Adevoso and others, refused to simply go home as cadets were ordered to do, and began recruiting fighters willing to undertake guerrilla action against the Japanese.

When war broke out in the Philippines, some 300 Philippine Military Academy(the Philippine West Point) and ROTC cadets, unable to join the USAFFE units because of their youth, banded together in a common desire to contribute to the war effort throughout the Bataan campaign. They worked to protect civilians and to assist the USAFFE forces by way of intelligence and propaganda.

Philippine cadets

After the surrender of American and Filipino forces on Bataan The Hunters ROTC relocated to the Antipolo mountains.
The Hunters originally conducted operations with another guerrilla group called Marking’s Guerrillas, with whom they went about liquidating Japanese spies. Led by Miguel Ver, a PMA cadet, the Hunters raided the enemy-occupied Union College in Manila and seized 130 Enfield rifles.

They were among the most aggressive guerrillas in the war and made the only guerrilla raid on a Japanese prison, Muntinglupa (New Bilibid), to free their captured members and to obtain arms.

Philippine guerrillas

During the Battle of Manila (1945), the Hunters ROTC, under the command of Lt. Col. Emmanuel V. de Ocampo, fought with the U.S. Army from Nasugbu, Batangas to the Manila General Post Office. The Hunters also jointly operated with the Philippine Commonwealth Army and Philippine Constabulary and the American soldiers and military officers of the United States Army in many operations in Manila, Rizal, Cavite, Laguna, Batangas and Tayabas (now. Quezon), including the area of Tagatay Ridge for the 11th Airborne troopers to jump on.

Jay Vanderpool

This force provided intelligence to the liberating forces and took an active role in numerous battles, such as the raid at Los Banos where Jay Vanderpool coordinated with the guerrillas to get the ground forces to the camp.

According to Major Henry Burgess, Comdr. of the 1st Battalion/511th Reg./11th Airborne, “… the guerrillas’ greatest contribution was furnishing the intelligence information about the camp, locating guard posts and guiding Lt. Skau’s reconnaissance platoon into position…”

Children of the original Hunters ROTC

On the other hand, Col. Francisco “Kit” Quesada, a member of Hunters-ROTC, said, “this daring rescue was staged by the well-known Hunters-ROTC Guerrillas, in coordination with the 11th Airborne Division.”

The operation was performed byway of land, sea and air, so therefore, in my personal opinion, it depended on where you were during this mission as to the extent of each unit’s contribution. They ALL deserve to be proud of their accomplishment.

Click on images to enlarge.

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Military Humor – 

 

 

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Farewell Salutes – 

James Barden Sr. – Citrus Heights, CA; US Navy, WWII, PTO USS Alabama

William Carlton – Foam Lake, SK, CAN; RC Army, CWO (Ret.), 1st Can. Para Batt.,Queen’s Own Rifles & PPCLI

Rueben Dockter – CO; US Army Air Corps, WWII, aircraft mechanic

Vincent Foley – Sydney, AUS; RA Army, WWII

Henry Gutkoski – Worchester, MA; US Navy, WWII, PTO, gunner’s mate, USS Roamer

Walter Harrell – Lake Wales, FL; US Army Air Corps, WWII, (Ret. 24 y.)

George LePore – Rochester, NY; US Army, 11th Airborne Division

Jack Moore – Dayton, OH; US Army Air Corps, WWII, ETO, B-24 pilot / Korea

Wilbert Ranta – Virginia, MN; US Army, WWII

Eugene ‘Mike’ Vecchi – Des Moines, IA; US Navy, WWII, Korea, USS Radford

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