END OF THE TRAIL
A Novel of the Philippines in World War II
By Atilano Bernardo David
“...Many of you will return to your loved ones covered with glory. Many of you will not return.” —General Douglas MacArthur, July, 1941
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On April 3rd, 1942, the Japanese infantry staged a major offensive against Allied troops in Bataan in the Philippine Islands. The invasion was led by General Masaharu Homma, who had already forced General Douglas MacArthur’s troops from Lingayen. The Japanese began to fire every half hour, increasing in intensity each time, while the defenders crouched down in their foxholes. At the same time the Japanese 22nd Air Brigade started dropping more than sixty tons of bombs. Dive bombers flew low to strafe troops and trenches. USAFFE Artillery and telephone lines were neutralized. Bamboo thickets, banyan trees, sugar cane fields were set ablaze. Then, as the dust cleared on April 9th—the anniversary of the death of legendary Emperor Jimmu, the first ruler to sit on the Japanese imperial throne— General Edward King of the United States Army Forces of the Far East surrendered to General Homma and the infamous Bataan Death March began. In this novel war, an evil wind, rages over a beautiful planet Earth. Like a scythe, it claims all the young men in their teens and twenties. This is the story of five on their journey to the end of the trail in the Japanese invasion of the Philippines.
Atilano Bernardo David was born in Angeles in the Philippines. He graduated from the University of Santo Tomas and then enlisted in the United States Armed Forces of the Far East during World War II. After the war, his various career activities included the founding of a fashion magazine and a home magazine and writing for advertising firms, newspapers and magazines. He was a Scout Executive for the Boy Scouts of America in Union, New Jersey, and he worked as an editorial cartoonist for The Freehold Transcript in Freehold, New Jersey. He also appeared in TV commercials and movies before retiring to Albuquerque, New Mexico.
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