Pfc. Willard Ewalt Hall
Born:  8 November 1920 - Multnomah County, Oregon
Parents: John Hall & Elizabeth Hall
Siblings: 1 step-sister
Home: 1603 Cherry Street LeGrande, Union County, Oregon
Occupation: service station attendant
Enlisted:
    - Oregon National Guard
Inducted:
    - U.S. Army
        - 10 September 1940 - LeGrande, Oregon
            - entered Army from Oregon National Guard
Training:
    - Camp Murray, Washington
        - promoted to corporal
            - may have been a mechanic
    - Fort Lewis, Washington
        - replaced a National Guardsman released from federal service
        - had never trained on a tank
Units:
    - 194th Tank Battalion
        - took a demotion in rank to private first class to join the battalion
Note: On August 15, 1941, the 194th received orders, from Ft. Knox, Kentucky, for duty in the Philippines because of an event that happened during the summer.  A squadron of American fighters was flying over Lingayen Gulf when one of the pilots noticed something odd.  He took his plane down and identified a buoy in the water.  He came upon more buoys that lined up, in a straight line for 30 miles to the northwest, in the direction of an Japanese occupied island, with a large radio transmitter, hundred of miles away.  The squadron continued its flight plane and flew south to Mariveles and then returned to Clark Field.  By the time the planes landed, it was too late to do anything that day.
    The next morning, another squadron was sent to the area and found that the buoys had been picked up by a fishing boat which was seen making its way toward shore.  Since communication between and Air Corps and Navy was poor, the boat was not intercepted.  It was at that time the decision was made to build up the American military presence in the Philippines.
Overseas Duty:
    - 4 September  1941
        - battalion traveled by train to Ft. Mason in San Francisco, California
    - Arrived: 7:30 A.M. - 5 September 1941
        - ferried to Ft. McDowell, Angel Island on U.S.A.T. General Frank M. Coxe
        - given physicals and inoculations
        - men with medical conditions replaced

    - Ship: S.S. President Calvin Coolidge
        - Boarded: Monday - 8 September 1941 - 3:00 P.M.
        - Sailed: 9:00 P.M. - same day
        - Arrived: Honolulu, Hawaii - Saturday - 13 September 1941 - 7:00 A.M.
        - Sailed: 5:00 P.M. - same day
            - took southerly route away from main shipping lanes
            - escorted by the heavy cruiser, U.S.S. Astoria, and an unknown destroyer
                - smoke seen on horizon several times
                -  cruiser intercepted several ships
                    - all were from neutral countries
        - Tuesday, 16 September 1941 - ships crossed International Dateline
            - became Thursday, 18 September 1941
        - Arrived: Manila - Friday - 26 September 1941
            - disembark ship - 3:00 P.M.
            - taken by bus to Fort Stostenburg
    - Philippines
        - lived in tents until barracks completed - 15 November 1941  
Engagements:
    - Battle of Luzon
        - 8 December 1941 - 6 January 1942
            - 8 December 1941
                - lived Japanese attack on Clark Field
                - planes did not go after tanks
                - after attack 194th sent to a bivouac three kilometers north of Clark Field
                    - from there they were sent to Barrio of San Joaquin on the Malolus Road
            - 12 December 1941
                - moved to new bivouac south to San Fernando near Calumpit Bridge
                    - arrived 6:00 A.M.
            - 15 December 1941
                - received 15 Bren gun carriers
                - turned some over to 26th Cavalry, Philippine Scouts
            - 22 December 1941
                - sent to Rosario
                    - west and north of the of barrio
                    - ordered out of the 71st Division Commander
                        - said they would hinder the cavalry's operation
            - 22/23 December 1941
                - operating north of Agno River
                - main bridge at Carmen bombed
            - 24/25 December 1941
                - tank battalions make end run to get south of Agno River
                    - ran into Japanese resistance but successfully crossed river
            - 25/26 December 1941
                - held south bank of Agno River from west of Carmen to Carmen-Akcaka-Bautista Road
                - 192nd held from Carmen to (Route 3) to Tayug (northeast of San Quintin)
            - 26/27 December 1941
                - ordered to withdraw
                    - 1 platoon forced its way through way through Carmen
                        - lost two tanks
                            - one tank belonged to company commander - Captain Edward Burke
                                - believed dead, but was actually captured
                            - one tank crew rescued
                - new line Santa Ignacia-Gerona-Santo Tomas-San Jose
                - rest of battalion made a dash out
                    - lost one tank at Bayambang
                    - another tank went across front receiving fire and firing on Japanese
                - Lt. Petree's platoon fought its way out and across Agno River
                - D Company, 192nd, lost all its tanks except one
                    - the tank commander found a crossing
                    - Japanese would use tanks later on Bataan
            - 29/30 December 1941
                - new line at Bamban River established
                - tank battalions held line until ordered to withdraw
            - 30/31 December 1941
                    - tank battalions held Calumpit Bridge
                    - covering withdraw of Philippine Divisions south on Rt. 3, San Fernando
            - 2 January 1942
                - both tank battalions ordered to withdrawal to Lyac Junction
                - 194th withdrew there on Highway 7
            - 5 January 1942
                - C Company and A Company, 192nd Tank Battalion, withdrew from Guagua-Poraline Line and moved into position between
                  Sasmuan and Lubao
                - 1:50 A.M. - Japanese attempted to infiltrate
                    - bright moonlight made them easy to see
                    - tanks opened fire
                    - Japanese lay down smoke which blew back into them
                - 3:00 A.M. - Japanese broke off engagement
                    - suffered 50% casualties
                - Remedios - established new line along dried creek bed
            - 6/7 January 1942
                - 194th, covered by 192nd, crosses Culis Creek into Bataan
                - both battalions bivouacked south of Aubucay-Hacienda Road
                - rations cut in half
    - Battle of Bataan
        - 7 January 1942 - 9 April 1942
           - January 1942
                - tank companies reduced to three tanks per platoon
           - 8 January 1942
                - composite tank company made up of tanks from the 192nd and 194th sent to
                  protect East Coast Road north of Hermosa
                    - their job was to keep the East Road open  north of Hermosa and prevent the
                      Japanese from driving into Bataan before the main battle line had been formed
                - remainder of tanks ordered to bivouac for night south of Aubucay-Hacienda Road
                    - tankers had been fighting for a month without a rest
                    - tanks also needed overdue maintenance
                    - 17th Ordnance
                - all tank companies reduced to ten tanks
                - three per tank platoon
                - sent to reopen Moron Road so General Segunda's forces could withdraw
                - tanks knock out an anti-tank gun
                - two tanks disabled by landmines but recovered
                - mission abandoned
                - Gen. Segunda's troops escaped using beach but lost their heavy equipment
        - 12 January 1942
            - C Company, with D Company, 192nd, sent to Cadre Road
                - forward position with little alert time
        - 13 January 1942
            - mines planted by ordnance prevented them from reaching Cadre Road
            - returned to battalion
        - 16 January 1942
            -  C Company sent to Bagac to reopen Moron Highway
                - highway had been cut by Japanese
                - Moron Highway, and Junction of Trail 162
                    - tank platoon fired on by antitank gun
                        - tanks knock out gun
                        - cleared roadblock with support of infantry
        - 20 January 1942
            - Banibani Road -tanks sent in to save 31st Infantry command post
        - 24 January 1942
            - tanks order to Hacienda Road in support of troops
                 - landmines planted by ordnance prevented them from reaching road
        - 26 January 1942
            - the battalion held a position a kilometer north of the Pilar-Bagac Road
                - four self-propelled mounts with the battalion
            - 9:45 A.M. - warned by Filipino a large Japanese force was coming
                - when the enemy appeared they opened up with all the battalion had
                - 10:30 A.M. - Japanese withdrew after losing 500 of 1200 men
                - prevented new defensive line being formed from being breached
        - 28 January 1942
            - 194th tanks given beach duty protecting southern beaches
            - guarded coast from Limay to Cabcaben
            - half-tracks patrolled roads
                - maintained radio contact with on-shore and off-shore patrols
It was at this time the tank battalions received these orders which came from Gen. Weaver , "Tanks will execute maximum delay, staying in position and firing at visible enemy until further delay will jeopardize withdrawal.  If a tank is immobilized, it will be fought until the close approach of the enemy, then destroyed; the crew previously taking positions outside and continuing to fight with the salvaged and personal weapons. Considerations of personal safety and expediency will not interfere with accomplishing the greatest possible delay."
        - February 1942
            - tank battalions on their own guarded airfields
            - battalions also guarded beaches to prevent Japanese from landing troops     
        - March 1942
            - two tanks were bogged down in mud
            - the tankers were working to get them out
            - Japanese Regiment entered the area
            - Lt. Col. Miller ordered tanks and artillery to fire at point blank range
                - Miller ran from tank to tank directing fire
            - wiped out Japanese regiment
        - 4 April 1942
            - Japanese launched major offensive
            - tanks sent into various sectors to stop Japanese advance
        - 6 April 1942
            - four tanks sent to support 45th Philippine Infantry and 75th Infantry, Philippine Scouts
                - one tank knocked out by anti-tank fire at junction of Trails 8 & 6
                - other tanks covered withdraw
            - 3rd Platoon sent up west coast road
                - near Mount Samat ran into heavy Japanese force
                - the tanks withdrew to Marivales
        - 8 April 1942
            - fighting on East Coast Road at Cabcaban
Tank battalion commanders received this order , "You will make plans, to be communicated to company commanders only, and be prepared to destroy within one hour after receipt by radio, or other means, of the word 'CRASH', all tanks and combat vehicles, arms, ammunition, gas, and radios: reserving sufficient trucks to close to rear echelons as soon as accomplished."
            - 10:30 P.M. - Gen. King announced that further resistance would result in the massacre of 6,000 sick or wounded troops and 40,000
              civilians
            - less than 25% of his troops were healthy enough to continue fighting
            - he estimated they could hold out one more day
            - sent his staff officers to negotiate the surrender of Bataan
            - 11:40 P.M. - ammunition dumps blown up
    - Corregidor
        - escaped to Corregidor night of surrender
POW:
    - 6 May 1942
        - remained on beach for two weeks
POW Camps:
    - Philippines:
    - Cabanatuan
        - original name - Camp Panagaian
        - Philippine Army Base built for 91st Philippine Army Division
            - put into use by Japanese as a POW camp
            - actually three camps
                - Camp 1: POWs from Camp O'Donnell sent there in attempt to lower death rate
                - Camp 2:  two miles away
                    - all POWs moved from there because of a lack of water
                    - later used for Naval POWs
                - Camp 3: six miles from Camp 2
                    - POWs from Corregidor and from hospitals sent there
                        - September 1942 - Camps 1 & 3 consolidated
                - "Blood Brother" rule implemented
                    - if one POW in the group of 10 escaped, the other nine would be killed
                - POWs patrolled fence to prevent escapes
                - Barracks:
                    - each barracks held 50 men
                        - often held between 60 and 120 men
                        - slept on bamboo slats without mattresses, covers, and mosquito netting
                            - diseases spread easily
                        - no showers
            - Morning Roll Call:
                - stood at attention
                    - frequently beaten over their heads for no reason
                - when POWs lined up for roll call, it was a common practice for Japanese guards, after the POWs lined up, to kick the POWs in
                  their shins with their hobnailed boots
            - Work Details:
                - Work Day: 7:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.
                - work details sent out to cut wood for POW kitchens, plant rice, and farm
                    - they also were frequently hit with a pick handle, for no reason, as they counted off
                - POWs on the rice planting detail were punished by having their faces pushed into the mud and stepped on
                - the POWs had to go into a shed to get the tools, as they came out, they were hit on their heads
                - if the guards on the detail decided the POW wasn't doing what he should be doing, he was beaten
                - many POWs on details were able to smuggle in medicine, food, and tobacco into the camp
            - to prevent escapes, the POWs set up patrols along the camp's fence
            - men who attempted to escape and caught were executed after being beaten
                - the other POWs were forced to watch the beatings
            - daily POW meal - 16 ounces of cooked rice, 4 ounces of vegetable oil, sweet potato or corn
                - most of the food the POWs grew went to the Japanese
        - Camp Hospital:
            - 30 Wards
                - each ward could hold 40 men
                    - frequently had 100 men in each
               - two tiers of bunks
                   - sickest POWs on bottom tier
               - each POW had a 2 foot by 6 foot area to lie in
            - Zero Ward
              - given name because it had been missed when counting wards
              - became ward where those who were going to die were sent
              - fenced off from other wards
                  - Japanese guards would not go near it
                  - POWs sent there had little to no chance of surviving
                  - medical staff had little to no medicine to treat sick
                  - many deaths from disease caused by malnutrition
Hell Ship:
    - Inter-island Steamer
POW Camp:
        - Davao, Mindanao
            - POWs built runways and revetments or worked on farm
                - 550 POWs worked on the airfield at Lasang each day
                - 50 POWs went to coral pits at Tabunco
                    - dug coral, broke it up, and loaded it on trucks
                    - coral was used as surface of the airfield's new runway
                - POWs intentionally slowed down the work
                - remaining POWs worked on farm planting rice and harvesting it
        - Punishment:
            - POWs made to knee on the sharp edge of a railroad rail
                - sticks placed behind their knees
            - when one POW was caught stealing tin snips he was stripped naked
                - "Little Caesar," Lt. Hashimoto, used judo on him
                - POWs was hit across the face, thrown to the ground  kicked in his groin, kicked in other parts of his body
                - his face was stamped on with Little Caesar's boots
                    - beating went on for an hour
                    - dragged to kitchen where he had stolen the snips and had to reenact the crime
                    - afterwards, he was beaten again for another three hours
                        - thrown into guardhouse for 21 days
                            - made to stand at attention, kneel for an hour, then stand halfway erect
                            - stood at attention 18 hours a day
                            - beaten every day
Willard stated that during his time as a POW, he only met one good Japanese Guard, "Big Stoop brought me quinine and food when I had malaria.  He saved my life.  He didn't beat any of our men like the other Japs did."
     - 6 June 1944 - half of POWs returned to Manila
    - first American plane dropped four bombs on the runway away from the POW barracks
      - American planes started to bomb the airfield nightly
    - POWs noticed Japanese planes flying from airfield were loaded with bombs and carried extra fuel tanks
    - all work stopped on airfield

    - food rations of those who remained behind were cut to a single cup of rice a day
        - POWs raided Japanese garbage for remnants of vegetables
        - many ate weeds that grew inside the camp compound
            - soon compound was bare
    - Transfer:
        - POWs were lined up in fours
            - two men on both ends of each four POWs had rope tied to their outside hands
            - rope tied to men in front of them and behind them
            - marched shoe-less to the Tabunco Pier and arrived at noon
        - Boarded: Erie Maru
            - packed into the ship's two holds
                - 400 POWs in forward hold
                - 350 POWs in the rear hold
                    - several tons of Japanese luggage also put in hold
                - holds were hot with no ventilation
            - next morning an American plane dropped a bomb that exploded near the ship
                - hatch covers were put on holds and the POWs began to pass out
                    - hatch covers were not removed for 2 hours
            - several more alerts happened for the next three days
            - Sailed: 6:00 P.M. on third day
            - Arrived: Zamboanga
                - remained there 10 days
                - POWs remained in holds
                - twice the POWs were allowed on deck andran through a hose spraying salt water
         - 4 September 1944 - transferred to Shinyo Maru
Note: The U.S. Military misinterpreted an intercepted Japanese message which stated the ship was carrying military prisoners.  Instead he read it as say the ship was carrying military personnel.  U.S.S. Paddle was sent to intercept the ship.
Hell Ship:
    - Shinyo Maru
        - Boarded: 4 September 1944
            - 250 POWs put in smaller afterhold
            - 500 POWs put in larger bottom hold
            - bombs from American planes landed alongside the ship at night rocking and shaking ship
        - Sailed: 5 September 1944
            - sailed at 2:00 A.M.
            - POWs warned they would be killed if ship was attacked
            - convoy zigzagged as it headed north in attempt to avoid submarines
            - submarines began to pick off ships in the convoy off Mindanao
            - POWs no longer allowed on deck
                - their lips and throats were covered with blisters from cement dust from the previous cargo
        - Sunk: 7 September 1944
            - 4:37 P.M. -first torpedo hit ship while it was off Sindangan Point, Mindanao
                - followed closely by a second torpedo
                    - hatch cover blown off hold
                    - water rushed into lower hold and there were arms and legs everywhere
                 Sgt. Onnie Clem, U.S.M.C., recalled what it was like when the torpedoes hit.  "I was just flying, just twisting and turning....I
                 couldn't couldn't see anything but these billowy forms like pillows.  I thought I was dead....I was underwater in the hold and these
                 pillows were the bodies of other guys in there, some dead, some trying to get out."

             - in the afterhold the POWs could barely see because of the cement dust in the air
             - POWs from both holds climbed over dead to get out
             - seven Japanese officers lined up on the bridge of the ship with rifles
                 - shot POWs as they climbed from holds
                 - dead Japanese laid on the deck
                 - those who made it out jumped into the water
            - ship listed to port (left) and sunk deeper into the water
                - the island was two or three miles away
            - small Japanese boats cruised in and out of the debris with armed soldiers who shot at the POWs
               - Capt. John Morrett recalled seeing a young soldier struggling in the water and asked him if he could swim.  The soldier replied ,
                 "No sir, not
very well."
  The officer began to say , " Don't worry, well make it somehow," but before he could finish, a shot rang out
                 the young soldier's head fell into the water.  There was a bullet hole in his head. 
             - POWs in water were hunted and shot in the water
             -  Pfc. Victor L. Mapes recalled , "The men began swimming toward shore three miles away --- like a herd of sheep.  The Japs from
                the other ships in the convoy were cutting them to pieces. I figured that the only way to survive was to break away from the bunch
                and swim to the opposite side."

             - 668 POWs died
             - only 82 POWs survived and made it to shore
             - Filipinos hid the POWs
Liberated: December 1944
    - U.S.S. Narwhal takes former POWs to Australia
        - crew stated they were shocked by the condition of the former POWs
Note: In February 1945, Willard, and other former POWs, toured the country and talked to families of men who were still POWs.  They were under strict orders not to speak about the conditions in the camps.  One of the places he visited was Salinas, California.
Married:
Discharged: 21 August 1945
Died: 28 October 1985 - Multnomah County, Oregon
Buried: Mount Hope Cemetery - Baker City, Oregon



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