ISADORE SABBOTA was born Oct. 23, 1918 in Detroit, MI. He was drafted into the Army in March 1941, assigned to the 200th CA (AA) Btry D and stationed at Clark Filed in the Philippines. After Pearl Harbor, he subsequently joined up with the 515th CA Bn. At Corregidor. On April 9, 1942 he was captured at Bataan.
Sabbota survived the Bataan Death March and was interned at Camp O’Donnell before being transferred to Fukuoka Camp No. 17 Omatu, Japan.
At Camp 17 he was appointed as a section leader and assigned to work in the coal mines.
During the course of his imprisonment under the guise of deceit, he secured shoes, clothing and food for his
men for the winter. His open defiance of the Japanese commander brought Red Cross food and the begrudging admiration of the Japanese.
The Japanese referred to him as “Ichi-ban Sabbota-san.” Simultaneously, he played them for fools earning the respect and the name “Sabotage” from the men in his section for his anti-Japanese antics.
After the bombing of Nagasaki his camp was liberated. He was promoted to sergeant and discharged from the Army May 18, 1946. Following his return to the United States he began working with his father in the shoe business and continued in that vocation until his death on January 10, 1986. He is survived by his wife Minnie and his three children and three grandchildren.
Credit: History of the Defenders of the Philippines Guam and Wake Islands 1941-1945 Turner Publishing Co
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