(December 1, 1924 – September 15, 2018)
Glenn Dowling Frazier was born in the rural town of Fort Deposit, Alabama on the first of December, 1924. At age 16, restless and desirous of adventure, he lied about his age and enlisted in the peacetime Army. Within a month he was assigned to the Philippine Department in Manila, P.I. 75th Ordnance Company under the leadership of General Douglas MacArthur. He attended officer candidate school was scheduled to graduate on December 14, 1941. On December 7, six days after his 17th birthday, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor and on December the 8th, war came to the Philippines.
On April 9, 1942, after months of fighting, General Edward King, Commanding General of the Philippine-American forces, surrendered to the Japanese. This was the largest surrender of a military force in US history. Col Frazier became a Prisoner of War and survived the horrific transfer of prisoners known as the Bataan Death March. During the war, he was sent to several slave labor camps and spent 3 and 1/2 years as a POW in Japan.
After WW2 ended on September 2, 1945, Col. Frazier returned to the states where, with the help of the GI Bill, he received a degree in Business Administration and Accounting from Meaders Drowns College and was employed as a sales instructor at the Welmer Wheeler Sales Institute. He later worked in moving and storage assisting all branches of the military moving soldiers across the globe. From 1952 to 1957, he opened 30 company offices and was in charge of 300 agents. The company grew from a net worth of less than one million dollars, to 16 million during his tenure.
Col. Frazier’s diverse sales career included owning and operating a National Car Rental company in North and South Carolina, and developing land in some western and mid western states.
In 2007, Col. Frazier was featured in the 14 hour documentary, The War, directed by Ken Burns. Frazier’s story not only opens the film, but is featured heavily in the 7 Part documentary series which continues to air all over the world. During that same year, Col. Frazier completed his book Hell’s Guest detailing his experiences before, during. and after the war. Ken Burns endorsed this accomplishment, which Frazier had been working on for nearly 25 years.
Col. Frazier’s numerous Military Awards include the Medal of Freedom, a Bronze Star and four Purple Hearts.
Today, Frazier speaks at military bases, churches, museums, schools and various civic organizations about his experiences during WW2 and in particular, about his journey overcoming hatred of his captors. When he is not involved with one of his speaking engagements, he can be found at the USS Alabama Battleship Park, promoting not only his book but his message of hope and forgiveness.