BUTLER (KDKA) – He survived one of the most brutal chapters of American military history and today, a hero from Butler County was laid to rest.
In a tiny church in Butler County, full military honors were extended for a giant of hero – Abie Abraham.
“This man was a unique individual to have gone through and survived what he did,” Stanley Pakutz said.
In 1942, Japan invaded the Philippines and marched 10,000 Americans 100 miles to a work camp in the jungle. Only 4,000 survived the brutality of their Japanese captors.
One of them was Abie Abaraham.
After the war and after surviving the horror of Japanese captivity and torture, he could have gone home. Instead, he helped find the bodies of his fellow soldiers.
“He gave two-and-a-half years of his freedom again to make sure these men were properly identified, that their bodies were taken care of. That’s just the kind of guy Abie was,” one man said.
Abie would write two books about the Bataan Death March and volunteer at the Butler VA. He died at the age of 98.
“I was never one of those guys, hero guys wearing medals and all that,” Abraham had once said.
However, he could have been as he was highly decorated as a soldier. He could have been bitter, he could have been angry, but that would not have been Abie.
“I never saw or heard him say anything bad about anybody,” one man said.
Abie is survived by an enormous family and a sea of friends.
As for where he’s headed now that his time on Earth is through, there’s an old military adage that says, “Men like Abie have to go to Heaven, because a long time ago they went through hell.”