Full military honors for slain soldiers
MANILA, Philippines—The remains of 15 soldiers killed in Tuesday’s clash in Basilan were given full military honors at the Libingan ng mga Bayani in Taguig City on Friday.
The bodies of the 15 slain members of the Army’s 4th Special Forces Battalion were flown to Manila by sundown on board an Air Force C-130, which touched down at the Villamor Airbase at around 6:30 p.m.
The remains of three of other casualties—Sergeant Andy Bonifacio Mabalot, Private Garry Colonia and Private First Class Ervin Dequito—were flown to Davao City from Zamboanga, while the body of First Lieutenant Frank Junder Caminos was taken to Cagayan de Oro City.
The 19 soldiers died during Tuesday’s 10-hour gunbattle with members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front in Al-Barka, Basilan. At least six Moro rebels were also killed during the clash.
They 15 soldiers flown to Manila were First Lieutenant Colt G. Alsiyao, First Lieutenant Vladimer A. Maninang, Second Lieutenant Jose Delfin E. Khe, Sargeant Ronald G. Sta Rita, Corporal Roderick J. Cabucana, Private First Class (PFC) Jonis S. Rigor, Balayang, PFC Michael D. Miguel, PFC Jordan D. Olivar, PFC Emerson C. Tugas, PFC Dennis R. Bulan, PFC Renie Y. Arciaga, PFC Rommel L. Ondivilla, PFC Mark Ted A. Quiban, PFC Roverto M. Ricafranca, and PFC Jordan M. Magno.
The families of soldiers killed in action will receive P250,000 from the Presidential Management Staff, Special Financial Assistance from the Philippine Army, P50,000 from the Mutual Benefit Association Inc. (MBAI), and P50,000 for funeral services support.
Members of the Philippine Army Finance Center Producers Integrated Cooperative’s (PAFCPIC) “We Care Program” will receive up to P100,000 if they have contributed for more than two years.
Dependents of the slain soldiers are also entitled to scholarship grants including tuition exemptions and allowances.
The slain soldiers may be posthumously awarded either the Distinguished Conduct Star, MMM Spearhead Device or Gold Cross Medal. With a report from Tina G. Santos, Philippine Daily Inquirer
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