MANILA, Philippines—A Philippine Military Academy cadet drowned while trying to save his younger brother and an uncle during a family outing on New Year’s Day in Ilocos Sur.
Cadet Bryx Lee S Betong, 19, was declared dead on arrival at the Cervantes Hospital in Cervantes town, a statement from the PMA said Thursday.
His younger brother was swimming in a mini-irrigation dam at sitio (settlement) Bao-angan in Comillas South when he was carried away by a strong current. An uncle tried to save him, but both were pulled down by the strong current, and Betong tried to save them.
The cadet was able to save the two, but he drowned in the process. He was pulled out of the water unconscious.
Betong, a native of Benguet, was an original member of PMA Class “Sinag Lahi” 2017.
He was a recipient of a schooling grant in the Japan National Defense Academy and left PMA for Japan in April last year and was scheduled to graduate in 2017. He was on a holiday break during the incident.
The PMA expressed its condolences over the “accidental” and “untimely” death of Betong.
“The Philippine Military Academy has extended support to the family of Cadet Betong. Immediately after knowing about the incident, PMA sent personnel to Mancayan to look into the concerns of the family regarding the wake and burial of the cadet. The Command will also look into the benefits that his family is entitled to brought about by his being a cadet in the Academy. The Command will extend any form of assistance, which is within its capacity, to the bereaved family of Cdt Betong,” PMA spokesman Captain Lynette Flores said.