The Battle of Sibuyan Sea (B.O.S.S.)
October 24, 1944 is a significant day in the world’s Naval History and may eveThe Battle of Sibuyan Sea (BOSS)n be the day of the Greatest Naval War
in WWII because it was then where Japan’s biggest battleship, the MUSASHI, one of the two biggest war vessels in the world then, along with the USS Princeton and the USS
Indianapolis, were sunk. However, the mighty USS Intrepid was able to survive, thus paving the way for the successful landing of Gen. Douglas MacArthur in Leyte Gulf, on October 20, 1944, four
(4) days earlier before the Battle of Sibuyan Sea happened.
The Battleship Musashi, owned by the Emperor of the Imperial Navy of Japan, was built in secrecy at the Nagasaki Naval shipyards, in violation of the Treaties of London and
Washington. It is said that the workers who built the ship were killed thereafter in order to keep and maintain its very secret and vital mission. “While the actual physical battle was largely
conducted between American and Japanese navy and air forces, a little-known but ultimately controlling fact was the crucial role played by Filipino World War II Guerillas in the final outcome. They
were the ones responsible for the recovery and transmittal to the American military under Gen. Douglas MacArthur in Australia of confidential Japanese documents containing the war plans of the
Japanese Navy, which had been lost at sea when the aircraft carrying Admiral Koga crashed in Philippine waters” (near Carcar, Cebu).
– Jesus Terry Adevoso, Asst. Secretary for Veteran Affairs.
While the Yamato, the Musashi’s sister ship is now a museum in Japan, the USS Intrepid stands proud and mighty as a public museum in America for everyone to explore. Many,
however, do not know its significance during WWII, particularly in the Philippine Seas. It is sad to note that even the Philippines does not have a display of this significant Battle of Sibuyan Sea
at our National Archives and Museum. Hence, it will be through a yearly commemorative event that we, Filipino-Americans will become more visible in the history of New York by recognizing its great
significance in the American War in the Pacific, thereby honoring those unsung heroes who have sacrificed their lives for freedom and love of country, not to be forgotten in the years to come by
This project started with a vision way
back in 2007 in the Philippines. Our non-government organization, Romblon Cultural Heritage Association, Inc. (is this correct?) first commemorated the Battle of Sibuyan Sea through a floral
offering and a Cultural Heritage program at Alcantara, a remote municipality in Romblon, Philippines, close to where Sibuyan Sea is located. Among those who participated as guests of honor were
representatives from the US Embassy and Australia.
In March 2015, Mr. Paul Allen, billionaire, philanthropist , a son of a World War II
veteran and co-founder of Microsoft , who was still actively in the expedition of sunken ships, with his crew, were able to locate the wreckage in the Philippine waters in their explorer ship, the
M.V. Octopus. This keen interest in WWII sunken ships was unfortunately cut short when Mr. Allen passed away from cancer on October 15, 2018.
In 2015 I had written a letter to the
Marketing Department of The USS Intrepid Museum expressing our intention to hold the event in one of its Function Rooms. Later on however, we decided to hold it at
the New York Philippine Consulate on October 24, 2015, where it was received with great pride since October is Philippine Heritage and History month.
This year 2019 we intend
to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Battle of Sibuyan Sea at the USS Intrepid Museum. Hence I would like to request through your most admirable leadership to please
advise us, in behalf of the Filipino–American community in New York, on how the Battle of Sibuyan Sea could be best commemorated to recognize the unsung heroes that have been forgotten or
unrecognized, and to honor the US Navy, with its allies, the Philippine Navy and the Australian Navy, which aided U.S. victory in WWII, as well acknowledge a worthy adversary, the Imperial Japanese
I will be most appreciative if you could
spare the time in your busy schedule to discuss this historically important event in a personal meeting so we can show more detailed materials in this presentation.
History will repeat itself unless we learn from it; and the pain, the tragedies, the
havoc it wreaks will happen over and over again for generations. Indeed, we must learn from our past to help shape our present decisions for the future.
While we all come from different roots, consistent and vibrantly directed exchanges of
varied cultural perspectives will foster deeper understanding of historical events that have impacted the modern world we presently live in.
VISION: To have the Commemoration of the Battle of Sibuyan Sea become a globally
celebrated event at the United Nations.
- To promote the Commemoration of The Battle of Sibuyan Sea during WWI and sharing of
information to the youth about the happenings and after-effects of the war in the Pacific that helped turn the tide for America to win the war.
2. To demonstrate that enemies could turn into friends, given time and progressive perspectives that stimulate thoughtful analysis that change and/or enhance deeper
understandings of past historical events.
- To initiate, encourage and support cultural exchanges amongst the citizens of nations involved: the U.S., Philippines, Japan and Australia, in order to work towards global
peace, understanding and goodwill as a common goal for all generations to come.