Taxi driver honored during Independence Day commemoration in Bohol
TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol – The 120th Independence Day commemoration in Bohol province on Tuesday was highlighted with the giving of recognition to a “modern hero.”
The provincial government honored Winifredo Balbido Maquindang, a native of Loboc town, who rescued six people during the October 2017 massacre in a Las Vegas concert, said to be the deadliest mass shooting in modern history of the United States.
Maquindang, 66, a taxi driver based in Las Vegas, received the certificate and plaque from Bohol Gov. Edgar Chatto and Vice Governor Dionisio Balite.
On October 2, 2017, Stephen Paddock unleashed a hail of bullets on an outdoor country music festival, killing 58 people, while he was perched on the 32nd floor of Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino.
Maquindang was waiting for passengers along the Vegas strip near the Mandalay Bay Resort when chaos erupted.
But instead of fleeing like everyone else, the Boholano picked up six wounded passengers.
He sped through traffic and reached the hospital to have his passengers treated some 30 minutes away from the carnage.
Maquindang has been living in the US for 47 years. He had just relocated to Nevada from Los Angeles, California, before the mass shooting happened.
At 8:15 a.m. on Tuesday, the Independence Day rites showed the re-enactment of the unfurling of the Philippine flag in Kawit, Cavite 120 years ago at the balcony of the new National Museum-Bohol.
It was followed by wreath laying and floral offering by local officials led by Chatto and Balite.
In his speech, Chatto said freedom should also look into the soul of every Filipino.
“How free are we today? Poverty is still there. Our continued search for growth is still there, even the growth of spirituality and values, is being challenged by current developments,” he said.
He also said that freedom that curtails the ability to express and to move around to progress means the fight for freedom is a continuous fight.
“What we gave gained we should preserve, what we have already achieved we should continue to strengthen. And we should learn how to respect the rights of others,” added Chatto.
The event capped with the introduction of the 21 candidates for Miss Bohol 2018. The contestants will compete for the crown in July.
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