WWII Japanese soldier who hid in Philippine jungle dies
Rosalinda L. Orosa (The Philippine Star) - January 17, 2014 - 3:13pm

TOKYO — Hiroo Onoda, the last Japanese imperial soldier to emerge from hiding and surrender after World War II, has died. He was 91.

Onoda died Thursday at a Tokyo hospital. Chief government spokesman Yoshihide Suga expressed his condolences Friday, praising Onoda for his strong will to live.

Onoda was an intelligence officer who came out of hiding on Lubang island in the Philippines in March 1974 and surrendered only when his former commander flew there to reverse his 1945 orders to stay behind.

Onoda and another World War II holdout, Sgt. Shoichi Yokoi, who emerged from the jungle in 1972, received massive heroes' welcomes upon returning home.

In his formal surrender to Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos, Onoda wore his 30-year-old imperial army uniform, cap and sword, all still in good condition.

Related story: Boracay in the 1970s in photos

BORACAY HIROO ONODA LUBANG ONODA PHILIPPINES PRESIDENT FERDINAND MARCOS SGT SHOICHI YOKOI WORLD WAR YOSHIHIDE SUGA
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