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The Battle I’ll Never Forget


Real Stories From Real Heroes

AARP would like to thank all veterans, active-duty military and their families for their service and sacrifices. We honor you with AARP Studios’ The Battle I’ll Never Forget on the American Heroes Channel.

This one-hour television special features critical battles in American warfare, brought back to life by soldiers who lived to tell the harrowing tale.

The program features three stories from three theaters of war showcasing battles on the desert ground, in the sunless sky, or on the dark, rough seas.

The Battle of Surigao Strait is  the last great naval battle in history. Philip Hollywood, who was a young fire controlman aboard the USS Melvin, describes the fear of encountering his first kamikaze attacks and the role he played on that fateful day.

Two decades later in Vietnam, Ramon "Tony" Nadal and his outnumbered troops are in a fight for survival in the Battle of Ia Drang. After heavy fighting and casualties, Nadal recounts how he led his tired troops on a harrowing rescue of a platoon trapped behind enemy lines.

In the Battle of Tal Afar, Sgt. Gary Villalobos and Lt. Col. Terrence Crowe are leading their men in searching the town when insurgents ambush them in an alley. Crowe is hit numerous times and falls to the ground 10 feet from Villalobos. Villalobos tells how he returned fire and refused to retreat until he could evacuate Crowe.

Read more about these brave men, and nine other heroes, as they recall their fiercest battles.