Philippines

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The Innocents: A Filipina WWII Oral History
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Journals of Peace — Karin Schumacher (Philippines)
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Julie Ellen Fryman (Philippines 2015-17) Tells The Incredible Story of Lola Ko Sa Pilipinas
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Letitia [Lettie] Morse Lladoc (Philippines 1964-66)
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Arnold and Annette Finn (Philippines 1964–66)
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Morton E. Braunstein (Philippines 1966–68)

The Innocents: A Filipina WWII Oral History

  by Diane Rodill (Philippines 1985–87)   Author’s Notes: Pseudonyms were used for the Filipino nationals below for privacy purposes. Mr. “Navarro” was my host-country father.    Introduction I still weep when I reread the oral history notes I recorded 30 years ago. As a child in the 1940s, in a darkened cinema, I watched shadowy newsreels of World War II raging in Europe. I was incapable of comprehending the carnage in the Pacific. Today, Laura Hillenbrand’s Unbroken has unveiled the cruelty faced by U.S. and Filipino POWs under Japanese occupation. But few have recorded the cruelty, without munitions, imposed on the innocents in my father’s native country. In 1985, I fulfilled a 25-year dream of serving as a PCV in the Philippines. I was further blessed to become part of a wonderful host country family, the Navarros, in Irosin, Sorsogon. Since I lived and worked at the local level, I . . .

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Journals of Peace — Karin Schumacher (Philippines)

Journals of Peace Karin Schumacher (Philippines 1968–70) Monday, November 21 3:30 pm • There was never a doubt in my mind. From the moment I heard him speak of the Peace Corps, as a high school freshman, I knew it was for me. Then, it was a simple dream of far-away places, colorful people and a chance to “help”. The assassination of President Kennedy plummeted me into a shocking realization of the real world – its irrationality and the terrible consequences of self-interested power. His death strengthened my resolve, and I entered Peace Corps training upon college graduation at age 21. I hadn’t yet formed any plans for after the Peace Corps. It was well that I hadn’t, for it was for the experience itself that I shaped my long-term goals. I spent two years in Cebu City, Philippines at the height of the Vietnam War, 1968-1970. I could never . . .

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Julie Ellen Fryman (Philippines 2015-17) Tells The Incredible Story of Lola Ko Sa Pilipinas

Marching On: The Incredible Story of Lola Ko Sa Pilipinas (My Grandmother in the Philippines) by Julie Ellen Fryman (Philippines 2015-17) This story was originally written down on July 30, 2015, the night that it was told to me, so that I wouldn’t forget how my host grandmother looked when she told me these things or how it was that she came to share it with me. It pains me to think that if just a few decisions had been different – if the family hadn’t volunteered to host a Peace Corps trainee at the last minute or if I had been placed in the next barangay (community) over, I would not have had the privilege to sit with my host mother and grandmother that night and listen to how the family I fell in love with was all made possible through the extreme courage and resiliency of the tiny . . .

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Letitia [Lettie] Morse Lladoc (Philippines 1964-66)

Monday, November 21 5:00 pm IMAGINE, President Kennedy has been dead for two years, but it’s amazing how, here on the island of Leyte in the Philippines so many miles away from the United States, you visit barrio homes and there on the wall is President Kennedy’s picture. People here always want to talk about President Kennedy and it’s nice because they talk about him as if he was a close friend. I feel so honored to be part of his Peace Corps. I know years from now I’ll look back at my Peace Corps years as my best years. Jesse and I went walking in the park near the Tacloban capital today. He is becoming very special to me. How am I ever going to leave this place or him. POSTSCRIPT 1988 I didn’t leave Jesse! We’ve been married now for 22 years and have two wonderful children, Billy . . .

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Arnold and Annette Finn (Philippines 1964–66)

Monday, November 21 3:51 pm DEAR PRESIDENT KENNEDY, My wife, Annette, and I began our senior year at the University of Florida in the spring of 1963. We weren’t old enough to vote for you in 1960, but we thanked those who did. We were marching and ducking stones in Gainesville in the summer of 1963 trying to break the color barrier in the local food establishments, eliminate the white-only restrooms and homogenize the bus seating. You were making a tough decision to press on with the Civil Rights Bill. We all knew that what we were doing was right. We loved you. You were young and dynamic. You spoke of things we could understand, relate to, and support. We trusted you. You spoke the truth and seemed to do so with courage. You drew the best from us, the young idealists who thought that we also had a contribution . . .

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Morton E. Braunstein (Philippines 1966–68)

Monday, November 21 6:03 pm ANDY WARHOL PREDICTED in the 1960’s that “in the future everyone will be famous for 15 minutes.” Well, I was famous, rich, and handsome too for 21 months while teaching in a small city on Mindanao, Republic of the Philippines. The constant attention wherever I went — focused on me, my American background, on my teaching — forced me to be more aware of how I impressed those around me. Naturally, I wanted to present a good image. Working on that image and the interpersonal relationships with co-teachers, friends, and my Filipino “family” contributed greatly to shaping me and my personality. I learned a lot about myself, my values, and what is important to me as an individual and as an American. That is perhaps the most valuable gift I received from the Peace Corps experience; that is the springboard from which I enact John . . .

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