Jan 30 2024


8:00 am - 6:00 pm

Liberation of Olongapo City

Liberation of Olongapo City / Olongapo City, Zambales

After Japanese Forces cancelled their planned attack on Vigan due to Filipino guerillas’ control of the region, MacArthur directed the XI Corps to land on the Zambales coast in San Antonio. Their primary mission was to drive rapidly across the base of Bataan in order to prevent Japanese withdrawal towards the peninsula. The corps also needed to seize and secure airfield sites in the San Antonio-San Marcelino area so that the Allied Forces could broaden the base of its air deployment in Luzon.

An estimated 13,000 Japanese troops were located in the Bataan-Zambales area. However, there were only less than 4,000 troops in the XI Corps objective area. The XI Corps scheduled a pre-assault bombardment on January 29 but Filipino guerillas informed the American convoy that there was no Japanese left in the area.

Meanwhile, the 149th Infantry, 38th Division dashed inland to take San Marcelino strip. Upon their arrival, they learned that the guerillas under Capt. Ramon Magsaysay, who later became the President of the Republic of the Philippines, had secured the field three days earlier. The troops did not encounter any opposition during their arrival.

The Commanding General of the XI Corps, General Charles Hall, assumed the command ashore about 8:00 AM on 30 January 1945. The next day, he called for the 38th Division, less the 151st RCT in XI Corps Reserve, to pass through the 34th Infantry at Olongapo and drive towards Bataan and establish contact with XIV Corps.