Defenders of the Philippines

picture of captivity and picture of release from captivity

James D. Cantwell , ADBC Commander

ADBC Commander, 1978-1979

James Cantwell, ADBC Commander
James D. Cantwell, born, July 21, 1919 in Roxbury, NY.  He enlisted in Jan. 12, 1940 and was assigned to 19th Air Base, Nichols Field.  He was taken prisoner on Bataan and was on the Bataan Death March.  He was interned at Cabanatuan two and a half years and then he was transported to Japan in Fukuoka No. 3.  he was liberated at the rank of Staff Sergeant after 43 months of captivity, weighing only 88 pounds and suffering from beriberi.  He returned home and was discharged April 7, 1967. 

He married the former Geraldine Meyers and had one son, Danny.  He managed a veneer mill, and a motel in Fleischmanns, N.Y. and then moved to Florida in 1963, and retired after building and managing an apartment house.  He was active in local politics, was a charter member of the Florida Chapter ADBC and served as National Commander in 1978 and 1979.  He died Feb. 9, 1987 at Bay Pines, VA of congestive heart failure exacerbated by his captivity.