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    Celebrating Kagay-anon Heroes of World War II, Capt. Andres Daba Bacal

    1st Battalion, 109th Infantry Regiment, 109th Division

    Andres Daba Bacal was born in Cagayan, Misamis Oriental on 17 October 1917.

    Aerial photo showing points where guerrillas crossed Cagayan River to liberate the poblacion in May 12, 1945 (NARA)

    According to the sworn affidavit of 1Lt. Salvador I. Pacana, former Agent Officer of the 109th Infantry Regiment, 109th Division, 10th Military District, he personally knew Capt. Andres D. Bacal of the 1st Battalion, 109th Division who was commissioned and inducted as 1st Lt. Inf., PA, ASN-37523 on 12 December 1942 by Maj. Manuel D. Jaldon, commanding officer of the 109th Infantry Regiment.
    Bacal joined the guerrillas on 1 November 1942 and is registered with the roster of troops of “A” Co., 1st Battalion, 109th Infantry Regiment as of 30 Nov 1942. He was promoted to Captain, Infantry, effective 16 June 1944 by Lt. Col. Robert V. Bowler, “A” Corps commanding officer.
    He served as battalion commander of the 1st Battalion, 109th Infantry Regiment, 109th Division from 10 November 1942 until the liberation. He led this unit in capturing Patag Airfield on May 9, 1945 and led the advance towards the west side of Cagayan road on 11May 1945 from highway to Patag.
    On 12 May, Bacal again led the 1st Battalion in crossing the Cagayan River at the vicinity of the steel bridge (present day Ysalina Bridge at Carmen) which was earlier destroyed by retreating USAFEE forces in 1942.
    Simultaneously, the 2nd Battalion also crossed the river at Julao-Julao (present day Consolacion, present day Maharlika Bridge), 3rd Battalion at the Japanese wooden bridge (linking Yacapin street to Lirio Street in Carmen).
    By 9:30 AM the whole town was occupied by guerrilla forces and Bacal’s 1st Battalion with the Combat Co attached secured the area from Ateneo de Cagayan to Macasandig to the east bank of Cagayan River from possible Jap counterattacks. Mopping up operations were ordered and after the search, then Cagayan was declared clear from enemy occupants.
    Bacal married Portia Abonitalla Chaves on 27 November 1943 in Tignapoloan in the midst of the Second World War, with whom he had five children.
    He retired from active duty on 17 October 1945. He studied law at Ateneo de Cagayan but did not pass the bar exam and worked for the government afterwards in Manila until May 24, 1965 when he passed on at the relatively young age of 47.

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