Grant to help Filipino community honor Bataan survivors, Seattle Filipino leaders

U.S. Army National Guard and Filipino soldiers shown at the outset of the Bataan Death March. (Photo by the U.S. National Guard via Flickr.)

Arts agency 4Culture has awarded $12,000 to the Filipino Community Village for projects to commemorate the Bataan Death March and to honor King County Filipino leaders. The installations will be part of a major expansion project that will add community space, computer labs and low-income housing for seniors to the Filipino Community Center in the Rainier Valley.

According to a press release from the Filipino Community Village Project, the Legacy Wall and Bataan Commemoration Project will be located in the lobby of its proposed Filipino Community Village Innovation Learning Center.

One installation will honor local Bataan Death March survivors with historic items that have been archived by The Bataan and Corregidor Survivors Association, according to a press release by the Filipino Community of Seattle, the organizations that runs the Filipino Community Center. The Battle of Bataan during World War II was the largest surrender in U.S. and Philippine military history, resulting in the capture of 63,000 Filipino soldiers and 12,000 American soldiers by the Imperial Japanese army.

The second historical installation will honor Filipino leaders in King County. People honored will include Velma Veloria, a labor activist and former state legislator; Dolores Sibonga, former Seattle City Councilmember; Fred and Dorothy Cordova, activists and founders of the Filipino American National Historical Society; civil rights activist Bob Santos; and labor activists Silme Domingo and Gene Viernes, whose murders in Seattle were attributed to exiled former Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos in a court case.

The Filipino Community of Seattle is currently raising money for the expansion project.