Hiroo Onoda might have been the most dedicated and obedient soldier in history. The Japanese soldier enlisted in the Imperial Japanese army in 1942 at the age of 20. Two years later, he was deployed to the Philippines and ordered to protect the occupied island from enemy attack. He was also ordered to "never surrender," a command he took quite seriously. Onoda continued fighting the war from the Philippines for 29 years after World War II ended because he didn't believe the Japanese had surrendered. Even when pamphlets were dropped to alert Japanese guerrilla soldiers that the war was over, Onoda was convinced it was just a trick by the Americans. It wasn't until 1974, when his commanding officer came to the island to find Onoda and ordered him to surrender, that Onoda finally gave up and went back home to Japan. He died in Tokyo in January, 2016.
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Written by Curiosity Staff June 14, 2016
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