REPORT OF MISSION
9 may 1945

MISSION: To learn the whereabouts of Major General Tsukda, Imperial Japanese Army commander of all Army forces in Zambales Province and at one time commander of the garrison at Fort Stotsenberg. Also Vice-Admiral Kondo, Imperial Japanese Navy, commander of the Naval Air Station, San Marcelino, Zambales. To locate these two officers and attempt their capture if at all possible.

COMPOSITION OF TEAM:

1st Lt. Robert S. Sumner, 0-468836
S/Sgt Lawrence E. Coleman, 20462757
Sgt William F. Blaise, 12036515
Sgt Paul B. Jones, 20418040
Sgt Edward J. Renhols, 33347905
Pfc Harry D. Weiland, 33449937
27 April to 30 April.

          A 3-day patrol in the BUCAO RIVER - MT. BOTOLAN area with a Negrito guide was made. Team had 3 contacts with the same group of Japs twice in the 3 days. The enemy group consisted of one petty officer and 4 able seamen from the Naval Air Station at SAN MARCELINO. We were able to take one of the seaman prisoner but remainder attempted to run and we were unable to show them the joys of the American way of life. The interrogation report from the one POW gained us no information other than the rumor that has been prevalent for the past 2 months, that KONDO had been killed by some of his junior officers. That is only hearsay from a Navy EM.

          Further information gained from Negritos on 28 April showed that small groups of Japs numbering 3 to 15 are in the BUCAO River area foraging for food and that the majority of these parties are unarmed. A native that had left the PINATUBO vicinity on 15 April told us that what Japs were left in the hills were dying of hunger and fevers. During the patrol, we found 4 separate bivouac areas and counted approximately 7 to 10 dead Japs in each one. All had died from natural causes.

2 May to 4 may.

          Checked the coastal areas from IBA to SANTA CRUZ in two patrols with Guerrillas. No. 1 patrol from IBA to PALUIG contacted 18 Japs, killing 15 and taking 3 prisoners. Interrogation showed these men had been absent from their units since 19 March. They were told by their officers to go to the coast and try to make their way north to BAGUIO and rejoin the Army forces there. Information as to CP area or ranking officers, none.

          No. 2 patrol from MASINLOC to SANTA CRUZ. Contacted 8, took no prisoners. The Japs ran and made no attempt to surrender though they knew they were surrounded. Net yield of documents and maps very good from the two contacts. Translation-we gained no information other than confirmation of what we already knew. Information was passed on to 6th Division.

5 may to 8 may.

          Team went to the end of a poor motor road in the vicinity of VILLAR by jeep on the night of 4 may. It was proposed that we spend 5 days in and around PINATUBA. At 0800 5 may we made out first contact with a group of 5 Navy men, fortunately we were able to elude them without being spotted. These men were in poor physical condition and digging for native potatoes. At 1330 we killed one Jap as he bolted for a clump of trees. We investigated the surrounding area but found no one. The soldier was carrying a sketch map that later turned out to be nothing but a road map of ZAMBALES Province. At 1700 we found a well used trail leading to a creek. Estimated that there were at least 50 Japs in the vicinity due to the foot prints made back and forth from the water hole to a trail leading into a banana grove. Prowled the banana grove and found traces of hasty evacuation not more than an hour before our arrival. Fires were still smoldering and fresh banana peels were strewn around. No papers or maps were taken. Picked a spot on this trail in some rocks where we could observe at night ñ 0300 after moon rise approximately 7 passed us heading for the coast-unable to make out whether they were armed or not.

6 May.

          Reconnaissance of the trail areas on the NW slopes of the foot hills surrounding PINATUBO (Note: the maps of this area are very inaccurate and there is a range of foot hills from 600 to 1000 feet elevation almost impassable and no trails leading up to them). From the tracks in the area and conditions of abandoned bivouac area we estimated approximately 500 in the area. During the day of the 6th we saw one group of 19 Army men unarmed and 4 Navy men, also unarmed. Physical conditions of these people ñ poor. The majority of them were carrying very large packs.

7 May.

          At 0900 team decided to return to IBA due to sickness of two of the Scouts. Our only water supply was from a creek that was contaminated. During our trip out we killed one Jap and the Negritos that came up to get us Killed 4 enroute to POONBATO, our meeting point.

          The team has patrolled the PINATUBO area since 3 April without securing a definite lead or any confirmed information which would aid in the accomplishment of our mission. It is our opinion the MT. PINATUBO has been abandoned as an enemy CP and the two officers in question have left the area by some means or other. The area we worked in was far too large for six men and information too scanty.

Robert S. Sumner
1st Lt., Inf,
Alamo Scouts.