Miracle During the Liberation Period
A miracle actually saved the town of Vigan during the last days of the Japanese occupation. As part of their military strategy at the end of the war, the Japanese were ordered to burn and completely destroy occupied zones before withdrawal. On the eve of their departure from Vigan, the Japanese Military Commander, Captain Fujiro Takahashi pleaded with the SVD procurator of the Vigan Seminary, Fr. Joseph Kleikamp, to take custody of the Japanese officer’s Filipino wife and their love child. The priest agreed on the condition that Takahashi and his men would leave Vigan without burning the town to prevent the town folks from seeking revenge on his family. (At that time, drums of gasoline was already strategically stored at the town plaza, ready to be used in burning the town). Takahashi agreed and left with his troops during the night.
The following morning, the people of Vigan discovered that the Japanese had left peacefully. They immediately spread an oversized American flag at the plaza forestalling the planned bombing by the Americans to flush out the Japanese forces. Thus, Vigan miraculously escaped total destruction, a misfortune that befell other colonial cities like Cebu and Intramuros in Manila.