A first-ever coffee table book on the uniforms of Philippine Fighters was launched May 6, 2021, as one of the salient events for the 79th Anniversary of the Fall of Corregidor by Philippine Veterans Bank.
Mandirigma – Uniforms and Equipment of The Filipino Warrior, 1935-1945 is authored by Albert Labrador, Tony Feredo, Donn Fernandez, Dondi Limgenco; and edited by World War II historian Dr. Ricardo T. Jose.
Mandirigma is packed with high-resolution, large-format photographs, featuring both re-enacted scenes shot from 2009 to 2021 and actual vintage World War II pictures,” said Miguel Angelo Villa-Real, PVB First Vice President for Marketing Communications during the virtual launch on Zoom hosted by Wilson Lee Flores’ Pandesal Forum at Kamuning Bakery Café.
The photographs were vetted by several experts including Dr. Jose of the UP-History Department and BGen. Restituto Aguilar (Ret), Executive Director of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) and former chief of the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office’s Veterans Memorial and Historical Division (VMHD).
“As a son of a World War II veteran, the publication of this unique World War II book fills me with such pride as this is another means of how we as Filipinos continue to honor the legacy and sacrifice of our Filipino WWII veterans,” said Veterans Bank Chairman Roberto F. de Ocampo.
“The book gives us a glimpse into the lives of hundreds of thousands of Filipino men and women who served and gave their lives for the country during World War II,” Villa-Real noted.
“Unknown to many, there were numerous military units that operated in the Philippines such as the USAFFE, the Philippine Army, the Philippine Constabulary, the Philippine Scouts, as well as hundreds of guerrilla groups all around the archipelago from the Commonwealth period, the Japanese Occupation and the Liberation period.”
Philippine Veterans Bank is the proud partner in the production of Mandirigma, as its contribution to the 2021 Philippine Veterans Week celebration. The Bank is proudly owned by the World War II veterans and their families and heirs and has supported several projects over the years to preserve and promote the stories and legacy of our Filipino WWII veterans.