WSMR holds the 35th Bataan Memorial Death March

WHITE SANDS MISSILE RANGE, N.M. (March 16, 2024) – Over 5,000 racers participated in the 35th Annual Bataan Memorial Death March which was held on March 16 at White Sands Missile Range.

The event honors a special group of World War II heroes who were responsible for the defense of the Philippine Islands of Luzon, Corregidor, and Harbor Defense Forts.


Among those in attendance was Bataan Death March survivor Valdemar DeHerrera, 104, who has attended for the past three years.

“Today has been good! A lot of people showed up,” said DeHerrera.

“He’s been coming to this for so long, it’s one of his favorite things to do,” said DeHerrera’s granddaughter, Celina Trujillo.


This was WSMR Commander Col. George C. Turner, Jr., WSMR Command Sgt. Maj. Michael S. Cordery, and WSMR Garrison Command Sgt. Maj. Jamal N. Latore’s first Bataan Memorial Death March.

“To see White Sands Missile Range come to life today is truly amazing. I am impressed with the team that put this on and with all the people who showed up today to participate in the march. I can’t say enough how proud I am,” said Latore.


WSMR Garrison Commander Col. David A. Mitchell’s participated in the march for the second year in a row.

“Today was great and there was high comradery among the marchers. The force is in great shape, the weather was awesome, and it’s pretty amazing to run a marathon with your newest 5,000 friends. I had a great time running this for the second year in a row and I would love to do it again,” said Mitchell.