MARION, Ala. (AP) - 94-year-old survivor of the infamous Bataan Death March, Bert Bank, was inducted Friday into the Alabama Military Hall of Honor Ceremony at Marion Military Institute.
Bank, who also endured more than three years of captivity in a
Japanese prison camp, was inducted along with David Jackson, an
Army helicopter pilot killed during a combat mission in Vietnam in
Weak and unable to stand very long during the ceremony, Bank was
the center of attention in his bright red blazer.
Several friends from Tuscaloosa, including University of Alabama
athletic director Mal Moore, drove down to honor Bank, who helped
launch the university's radio football network when he returned
from World War II.
Bradley Byrne, chancellor of the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education, says the induction ceremony reflected the
heroism not only of Bank and Jackson, but of today's Americans in
Representing Gov. Bob Riley at the event, Byrne also honored the
memory of Jackson, who received the Silver Star posthumously during
a combat mission in support of ground troops in Vietnam in 1969.
Jackson was a warrant officer from Sheffield who first joined the Navy and later the Army, because he wanted to fly.