August 13, 2017

Hirono Leads Efforts to Honor Filipino WWII Veterans, Fights to Protect Hard-Earned Benefits

Updates Veterans on Congressional Gold Medal and Registry

HONOLULU – Senator Mazie K. Hirono today spoke with Filipino World War II veterans and their spouses, widows and family members at the World War II Filipino-American Veterans, Hawaii Chapter meeting at Hale Halea in Kalihi. Her remarks focused on the sacrifice and commitment of our Filipino World War II veterans and the importance of family reunification for them and their loved ones.

“When called to serve, Filipino World War II veterans answered the call and fought and sacrificed to protect the freedoms of our citizens and allies,” said Senator Hirono. “Decades later, they continue to face challenges in their fight for their earned benefits and recognition. I remain committed to my work on behalf of these brave soldiers, including recognition at a Congressional Gold Medal Award Ceremony.”

The Senator also provided an update on her work to safeguard benefits for Filipino Veterans at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Regional Office and Outpatient Clinic in Manila, Philippines. 

Senator Hirono has made fighting for Filipino veterans a top priority in Congress. In 2016, Senator Hirono led the successful effort to enact her Filipino Veterans of World War II Congressional Gold Medal Act, which collectively awards Filipino World War II veterans with the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest civilian honor from Congress, in recognition of their dedicated service to the U.S. In addition, she introduced the Filipino Veterans Family Reunification Act earlier this year to expedite the visa process for children of Filipino World War II veterans, and exempt approximately 20,000 children of Filipino veterans and their families from the limitation of immigrant visas.

Senator Hirono meets with Filipino World War II Veterans, their spouses, widows and family members


Senator Hirono speaks with Oscar D. Bangui, president of the WWII Filipino-American Veterans Hawaii Chapter, and his son Paterno P. Bangui. Paterno P. Bangui was reunited with his father through the Filipino World War II Veterans Parole program.

Filipino Veterans of WWII Congressional Gold Medal Registry

Senator Hirono has been working with the Filipino Veterans Recognition and Education Project to see through the efforts to award these brave soldiers for their dedicated service to the U.S. As part of this effort, the project is currently registering Filipino WWII Veterans and surviving relatives for the purposes of receiving an official bronze replica of the Congressional Gold Medal that will be awarded collectively in their honor. If you or someone you know may qualify, please click here to learn how you can apply.

Please click here to view the design for the official bronze replica of the Congressional Gold Medal.