It establishes April as Bataan-Corregidor Heritage Month in New Mexico.
"New Mexico's soldiers displayed tremendous bravery and suffered unspeakable atrocities as a result of their service at Bataan and Corregidor," Martinez said upon signing the bill.
Bataan and Corregidor were battlegrounds in the Philippines. It was there that 12,000 American and 63,000 Filipino soldiers - in short supply of food, water and ammunition - dug in to try to stop advancing Japanese attackers.
More than 1,800 of the Americans were from New Mexico, members of the 200th and 515th Coast Artillery Regiment.
With a massacre looming, the U.S. commander surrendered his forces at Bataan Peninsula on April 9, 1942. Next came the Bataan Death March, a trek of 65 brutal miles to a Japanese war compound.
Between 7,000 and 10,000 of the U.S. and Filipino soldiers died during the march from dysentery, beatings, heat stroke and executions for any disobedience.
State Sen. William Payne, R-Albuquerque, sponsored the measure to honor the soldiers of Bataan and Corregidor. It is Senate Bill 195.
Senators approved the bill 38-0 and it cleared the House of Representatives 70-0.
Milan Simonich, Santa Fe bureau chief of Texas-New Mexico Newspapers, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 505-820-6898. His blog is at nmcapitolreport.com