05 October 2009

More Fallen Heroes from Ondoy

Soldiers Helping
GMANews.TV reported that two members of the Philippine Army had perished in separate occasions over the weekend while participating in rescue operations for the victims of Tropical Storm 'Ondoy' in Laguna province.

A statement from the Philippine Army said Pfc. Venancio Ancheta died Saturday (26 September 2009) in Barangay Tunhac in Famy, Laguna, after saving 20 citizens from possible drowning in raging floodwaters caused by the storm.

"His heroism [serves] as an inspiration for the whole Philippine Army and, in particular, his teammates who continued the mission and rescued another 600 civilians in Famy, Laguna," the statement said.

Ancheta perished after he was severely struck by a log while bringing a drowning man to safety. His body was found by the Disaster Relief and Rescue Unit of the 16th Infantry Battalion the next day.

Ancheta was given departure honors on Wednesday, 30 September, at the Libingan ng mga Bayani at Fort Bonifacio, according to the statement.

Another Army fatality, Cpl. Adriano Regua, was leading rescue efforts in Barangay Nanguma in Mabitac, Laguna, when he was killed while trying to save a militiaman who was also part of the rescue mission from drowning.

The militiaman he was trying to save also did not make it, the statement said. Their remains were found on Sunday along the Manila East Road.

"[Regua] led his team well, as they were able to save 200 residents in the area alone even at the cost of their own lives," the statement read.

The statement noted how Regua performed his duty as a soldier in Laguna while his own family was in danger in Tanay, Rizal.

Military rescue teams took Regua’s family to safety.

Five members of the Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit (Cafgu) Active Auxiliary also passed away while conducting rescue operations in Laguna. They were identified as Joel Hernalin, Erineo Olaguer, Pedro Falcon, Florencio Dequino, and Artenio Descotido.