A Bataan Death March Survivor: The Firsthand Account of an American POW, 75 Years Later

Saturday, June 24, 11 a.m.

Join us for a book talk given by noted author, historian, and speaker, Frank A. Blazich Jr. in the auditorium of the Archives and History/State Library Building at 109 E. Jones Street in Raleigh on Saturday, June 24th at 11:00 a.m.

Blazich is the Curator of Modern Military History at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History. He will discuss Colonel David L. Hardee's memoir, Bataan Survivor. The memoir, edited by Blazich and published by University of Missouri Press, is a forgotten firsthand account, written in the immediate aftermath of World War II. This memoir vividly portrays the valor, sacrifice, suffering, and liberation of the defenders of Bataan and Corregidor through the eyes of one survivor.

Immediately following Blazich's talk, there will be a book signing at the North Carolina Museum of History. Copies of Bataan Survivor will be available for purchase in the Museum Shop. This event is free and open to the public. 

The personal memoir of Colonel David L. Hardee, first drafted at sea from April-May 1945 following his liberation from Japanese captivity, is a thorough treatment of his time in the Philippines. A career infantry officer, Hardee fought during the Battle of Bataan as executive officer of the Provisional Air Corps Regiment. Captured in April 1942 after the American surrender on Bataan, Hardee survived the Bataan Death March and proceeded to endure a series of squalid prison camps. A debilitating hernia left Hardee too ill to travel to Japan in 1944, making him one of the few lieutenant colonels to remain in the Philippines and subsequently survive the war.

As a primary account written almost immediately after his liberation, Hardee’s memoir is fresh, vivid, and devoid of decades of faded memories or contemporary influences associated with memoirs written years after an experience. This once-forgotten memoir has been carefully edited, illustrated, and annotated to unlock the true depths of Hardee’s experience as a soldier, prisoner, and liberated survivor of the Pacific War. 

Select letters from Colonel Hardee will be on display in the Archives and History/State Library Building, and a special display of Colonel Hardee's artifacts will also be available in the lobby at the North Carolina Museum of History. 

For more information please contact the State Library of North Carolina, 919.807.7450, slnc.reference@ncdcr.gov or http://statelibrary.ncdcr.gov.