Capas National Shrine

Veterans Memorial and Historical Division [02/01/2016]

The site of the Concentration Camp (Camp O'Donnell) where the survivors of the infamous Death March during the Second World War were incarcerated. The shrine is developed as a memorial that consists of an area where each planted tree represents one Filipino or American soldier who died in the concentration camp.

Features and Facilities

Obelisk: With a towering height of 73 meters, the obelisk stands as the focal center of the entire shrine which symbolizes peace. The needle-like tower consists of three sections which represent the Filipino, American and Japanese people in this modern age of global peace, who have learned the lessons of war. The core area of the tower
(hollow) is accessible to the people. Here they look up through the three-prong steeple to be amazed by its magnificent height and form.

Wall of Heroes: Dedicated to the Filipinos and American brave men and women who, in defense of the Philippines in various places in the islands during WWII, died in battle or while in captivity. Etched in the inner black granite wall of the Memorial are the names of some 30,000 Filipinos who were incarcerated inside the concentration camp in Capas.

Esplanade: A wide mall from the front gateway leading to the Wall of Heroes. It is 20 meters wide and 443 meters long.

Mini Forest: One of the features of the shrine is the mini-forest where 31,000 trees were planted to symbolize the 6,000 Americans and 25,000 Filipinos who died in the concentration camp. It is also meant to evoke environmental consciousness among the people.

Boxcar: Measuring about 8ft long, 6ft wide and 6ft high, this boxcar and many of its kind was used to transport Filipino and American prisoners of war from San Fernando, Pampanga to prison camps in Capas, Tarlac.

This boxcar is the last known surviving freight car of its kind, and is a mute witness to the human sacrifice and heroism of all those who were victims of the Bataan Death March.

Guillermo B Francisco Hall: The Guillermo Francisco Hall, dedicated to the memory of Major General Guillermo Francisco who was the Chief of the Filipino group at the Capas POW concentration camp. It serves as the administration building and as a reception hall for meetings and conferences. It also houses a mini museum which exhibits pictures of the infamous Death March and a scale model of the Camp O'Donell Concentration Camp.

Bridge of Remembrance: In recognition to the O'Donnell River, the only source or water which sustained the Prisoners of War Bridge of Remembrance: (POWs) during the five (5) months "Bridge of incarceration, Remembrance" was inaugurated on April 1, 2001 through the effort of the Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor.