Howard Pope, MD, family physician for Baptist Health Floyd Medical Group-Georgetown and retired Brigadier General in the U.S. Army Reserve, completed a 26-mile trek through the deserts of New Mexico on March 25, 2012. The annual march honors the lives lost during the World War II Bataan Death March. Thousands of military and civilian supporters meet each year in New Mexico to remember those soldiers who died by traversing a trek of rough, desert terrain that spans 26 miles across the White Sands Missile Base. Dr. Pope was joined on the march by his daughter, Jennie Ellen, MD, an occupational medicine physician in Phoenix, Arizona. He trained for over a year to get in shape for the grueling course.
This Memorial Day will be a special one for Dr. Pope. He reflected, “I will always look back on my Bataan Memorial Death March experience as a humbling and inspiring time. I’m proud to honor all of our veterans, especially those from World War II. There aren’t many surviving WWII vets left and we need to take the time to thank them for their service and contributions to our freedom before it’s too late. We should also applaud all who have served in the past and those serving now for their personal sacrifices and patriotic efforts to protect our country.”