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January 7, 2018

Report on the Investigation of the Tuy-FAIT, June 1946

The Fil-American Irregular Troops, otherwise known simply as FAIT, was founded by the retired US Army Colonel Hugh Straughn and was made up of US Army soldiers and Filipinos who refused to surrender to the Japanese in 1942. Although primarily operating in Rizal Province, the guerrilla outfit also operated in Batangas, including the town of Tuy. In this 1947 document1, Lt. Leonard Aubuchon and Lt. Eliseo Sta. Romana presented their report on the investigation of the Tuy-FAIT guerrillas.

[p. 1]

18 June 1946

REPORT ON “TUY UNIT-FAIT”

In accordance with verbal instructions from Chief of Section, Guerrilla Affairs Branch, G-3, AFWESPAC, lieutenants Leonard J. Aubuchon and Eliseo Sta. Romana proceeded to Tuy, Batangas to contact the Tuy Unit FAIT in order to determine whether or not this organization should be recognized by the United States Army. The following report is a summary of the investigation and basis for the recommendation.

HISTORY

Domingo A. Tuguigui, a minister of the Disciples of Christ Church, is claimed to have been active in espionage activities in Manila in early 1942. In August 1942, he learned he was wanted by the Japs, so he left Manila and went to Tuy, Batangas where on 3 September 1942, he began to organize the Tuy Unit FAIT, asserting that he had been given authority to form the unit by Col. Hugh S. Straughn.

During the years of occupation, the unit confined its activities to maintenance of peace and order, spreading propaganda, hunting Jap spies, sabotaging the Jap experimental cotton crops and assisting in the organization of other guerrilla units. By 1944, the unit had gained a membership of 2000 members and the arms they possessed totaled forty.

On 4 May 1944, Mr. Tuguigui, CO of the Tuy unit, was captured by the Japs and executed because of his activities in organizing guerrilla units. After the death of Tuguigui, the Tuy unit became disorganized and each company operated separately. On 15 October 1944, Vicente Calingasan, Mayor of Tuy and Executive Officer of the Tuy Unit FAIT, gathered together approximately 700 members of this unit and they were inducted into the Rainbow Regt of the Blue Eagle Command. Due to the disorganization of the Tuy Unit FAIT, all members were not inducted into the Blue Eagle. On 10 March 1946, Apolinario Apacible, formerly of the FAIT, later recognized as a Lt. Col. in the Blue Eagle, submitted the roster of the Tuy Unit FAIT requesting recognition.



FINDINGS

The following persons were interviewed and their statements are the basis for the findings:

Mrs. Marieta Tuguigui – Widow of Domingo Tuguigui
Apolinario R. Apacible – Ex O Tuy Unit FAIT
Vicente Calingasan – S-1 Tuy Unit FAIT (Mayor of Tuy)
Tomas J. Panaligan – Co CO Tuy Unit
Perpetuo Bandelaria – Co CO Tuy Unit
Arcadio Sta Cruz – Regt Tuy Unit
Vicente Atienza – Co Ex O Tuy Unit
Jose Bayaborda – Plt Ldr Tuy Unit
Gerardo Panaligan – Recon Officer Tuy Unit
Miguel S. Atienza – 1st Sgt Tuy Unit

[p. 2]

Leonardo Almanzor – Co CO Tuy Unit
Bienvenido Ermita – Plt Sgt Tuy Unit
Col Marking Agustin PA overall Commander Fil-American Guerrillas.

The Tuy Unit FAIT was organized during September 1942 with Domingo Tuguigui as CO and Vicente Calingasan, Mayor of Tuy, as Executive Officer. The Unit had very few arms so could not operate as a combat organization. According to the statements of Vicente Calingasan and Apolinario R. Apacible, leaders of the organization, their activities were confined to maintenance of peace and order, hunting out spies, spreading propaganda and helping to organize other guerrilla units. They also claim to have sabotaged the Jap cotton raising experiments. All of these activities were patriotic work, but were more minor in nature and cannot be considered as having contributed greatly to the eventual defeat of the Japanese.

It is apparent that the organization was very loosely knit, for after the death of Domingo Tuguigui, it was never operated as a unit and each company worked independently. It is the belief of the investigating officer that the unit actually ceased to exist after Tuguigui’s death for the members of the organization were extremely lazy as to activities and operation after this time. On October 1944, Vicente Calingasan and Apolinario Apacible recruited approximately 700 former members of the Tuy Unit FAIT, which group became a part of the Rainbow Regt, Blue Eagle Command that was then in the process of organizing.

An undetermined number of former members of the Tuy Unit were later recognized as members of the Blue Eagle Brigade. It was not until 10 March 1946, five days before the deadline for submitting guerrilla rosters, that the roster of the Tuy Unit was submitted by Apolinario Apacible. In this roster, he lists himself as Ex O, whereas Vicente Calingasan was actually the Ex O. When asked why they were late in submitting their roster, their reason was that they heard the Blue Eagle Brigade was recognized, they felt they had equally as much claim to recognition and submitted a roster. When the members of the unit were interviewed in Tuy, they were asked the question “What was the longest period you were a full-time guerrilla?” and the answer received was invariably “I never was a full time guerrilla, I worked part time.” Many members of the unit were farmers who continued to farm during the occupation, and according to the unit history and statements of the members, they were engaged in the raising of cotton which was a Japanese experimental project. In a signed statement in the file of this office, Col. Marking Agustin PA overall commander of Marking Fil-American Guerrillas, and Col. Terry Adevoso, overall commander of Hunters ROTC, state that Tuy Unit FAIT was a passive organization. It is considered that:



a. The unit was never well organized.
b. Activities were of a passive nature.
c. The members only operated on a part time basis.
d. The unit ceased to exist as a unit in May 1944.

POLITICAL ASPECTS

Both Vicente Calingasan and Apolinario R. Apacible are politicians and evidence was found that they used the Blue Eagle

[p. 3]

Brigade for political purposes during the recent election campaign, however, it is believed by the investigating officer that the Tuy Unit FAIT was too disorganized to be used effectively as a political weapon.

RECOMMENDATION

After careful consideration of statements made by members of the organization and an analysis of the documents presented, it is recommended that the Tuy Unit FAIT not be favorably considered for recognition.

[Sgd.] ELISEO STA. ROMANA
1st Lt. Inf. (PA)
[Sgd.] LEONARD J. AUBUCHON
2nd Lt., FA

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Notes and references:
1 File Number 110-63, Tuy Unit FAIT, United States National Archives, downloaded from Philippine Veteran Association Office.

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