/*********************************************** * Chrome CSS Drop Down Menu- (c) Dynamic Drive DHTML code library (www.dynamicdrive.com) * This notice MUST stay intact for legal use * Visit Dynamic Drive at http://www.dynamicdrive.com/ for full source code ***********************************************/
Minnesota National Guard
Bataan Death March survivor Peck dies at 90

A “damn good soldier”

Posted: February 28, 2011 - 9:08pm
By Mike O'Rourke
Associate Editor

Henry Peck of Brainerd, a survivor of the Bataan Death March, was remembered Monday by his longtime friend and fellow survivor, Walt Straka, as a hardworking, honest man who was a “damn good soldier”

Peck, 90, died Monday at Good Samaritan Society-Bethany

“He was kind of bull-headed in a way,” Straka said, remembering that Peck took offense when a Bataan memorial portrayed the soldiers in the wrong type of helmet “You couldn’t ask for better friends He was always honest to me, just a good honest guy I really liked the guy”

Peck’s death means that Straka, a Brainerd resident who was reached while vacationing in Pharr, Texas, is the lone Brainerd area survivor of Brainerd’s 34th Tank Co
“I’m the last one,” Straka said

That tank company was federalized and redesignated the 194th Tank Battalion The battalion was the first tank unit in the far east before World War II

Peck, Straka and their fellow soldiers fought and held defense positions on the Bataan peninsula of the Philippiines until US forces were ordered to surrender on April 9, 1942 A state of Minnesota proclamation issued last year noted that nearly 10,000 US and Filipino troops died during the 60-mile death march to Camp O’Donnell

Of the original 82 officers and men of the 34th Tank Co who left Brainerd 64 accompanied the 194th overseas Three were killed in action and 29 died as POWs Only 32 survived to return to Brainerd at the end of World War II
Ken Porwoll, another survivor of the death march was originally from Brainerd but has lived in Roseville for many years

“He was a good guy,” Porwoll said of Peck

Peck had lived at the nursing home in recent years and suffered several strokes, his wife said last fall In earlier interviews with the Brainerd Dispatch Peck recounted how as a Japanese POW he had contracted malaria, was beaten, worked to exhaustion and was malnourished to a point where he weighed only 80 pounds

“I didn’t give up hope,” he said in a 2003 interview “I wanted to live We knew they (the allies) were coming but they were damn slow”

Services will be 2 pm Friday at Zion Lutheran Church in Brainerd with Pastor Mark Kleckner officiating Friends may call from 4 to 7 pm Thursday at Nelson-Doran Funeral Home in Brainerd and one hour before the services at the church on Friday Burial will be in Lake Edward Cemetery

Article source

Articles archive

In The News archive

Media Advisory archive

Latest News

Securing the Bold North: Minnesota National Guard supports Super Bowl LII

Posted: 2018-02-02  10:45 PM
Super Bowl 52 MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - More than 400 Minnesota National Guardsmen are supporting security efforts in Minneapolis ahead of Super Bowl 52.

"This is what we do," said Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. "When the local community can't meet the public safety needs, they come to the Guard. We're their normal partner, we're a natural partner, and we're their preferred partner when it comes to filling in the gaps that they can't fill."

At the request of the city, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton authorized the Minnesota National Guard to provide support to security efforts leading up to and during Super Bowl 52. The Guardsmen are providing direct support to and working alongside law enforcement officers from across the state. Like their civilian law enforcement partners, Minnesota Guardsmen are focused on ensuring a safe experience for the residents and visitors who are attending the Super Bowl festivities.

100 Years Ago, Camp Cody's "Grand Old Man" formed 34th Infantry Division

Posted: 2018-01-18  12:59 PM
Gen. Augustus Blocksom Decorated veteran Augustus Blocksom was a man of his time, but times were changing. He exemplified Progressive Era America prior to the Great War. Blocksom participated in all the major US Army campaigns for nearly a half-century. He fought American Indians, Spaniards, Chinese and Filipinos. He brought that experience to Camp Cody, New Mexico where he assembled units from across the mid-West to form the 34th Infantry Division in 1917.

Iowa Red Bull takes command of 34th Infantry Division

Posted: 2017-12-13  10:11 AM
Minnesota National Guard JOHNSTON, Iowa - Brig. Gen. Benjamin J. Corell, Deputy Adjutant General of the Iowa National Guard, assumed command of the 34th Infantry Division "Red Bulls" during a ceremony in Rosemount, Minnesota, on December 9, 2017.

Headquartered in Minnesota, the division has been commanded almost-exclusively by members of the Minnesota National Guard since 1968.

"Typically there's been very few people who have been allowed to command the 34th Infantry Division that didn't come from the state of Minnesota," Corell said.

Minnesota-based aviation unit honors storied division, enters into new, 'expeditionary' era

Posted: 2017-12-12  11:29 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - Soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade (ECAB), who recently celebrated a year full of achievements, have embraced a new name: Red Devils.

The St. Paul-based unit hosted its annual aviation brigade ball Dec. 9, at the Envision Event Center in Oakdale, Minnesota, where the unit's new logo was unveiled.

Soldiers of the 34th ECAB, which falls under and supports the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, will continue to wear the Red Bull insignia on their uniforms. However, they will now be known and referred to as the Red Devils, a name that pays homage to the division's historical accomplishments and fierce warfighting.

Article archive