THE third Infantry Division (3ID) of the Philippine Army awarded 11 soldiers who were figured in an encounter with suspected communist rebels at Barangay Tan-awan in Kabankalan City, Negros Occidental on May 12, which killed two of their comrades.
Brigadier Dinoh Dolina, commander of the 3ID led the pinning of medals at Camp Peralta Station Hospital in Jamindan, Capiz on May 13.
Commended were the eight members of the 62nd Infantry Battalion (IB) who were injured during the firefight.
Sergeant Niño Nabaunag, Private First Class (PFC) Michael Besana, PFC Voltair Catamin, PFC Angelito Bariga, PFC Kenneth Cerbo, Private Ryan Las Piñas, Private Joven Taghap, and Private John Daryle Delgado prevented the rebels from propagating threat and terror on the day of May 14 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections in the said village.
The encounter caused temporary displaced 236 individuals in the village.
Also commended were Sergeant Paolo Ogaro, PFC Hans Christian Dela Cruz, and PFC John Anthony Barrientos, all members of the 61st IB, who got injured after an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) set by remnants of the terrorist organization exploded at Barangay Caratagan in Calinog, Iloilo on May 5.
Dolina, in a press statement Tuesday, May 15, said he commended the bravery and heroism of the wounded soldiers for they have fought not only for the people, but also for defending peace and progress in the region.
“They are the living proof that your Army in Central and Western Visayas are steadfast to their mandate of serving the people, and securing the land," he added.
It can be recalled that two soldiers, Sergeant Sandy Arevalo, and Private First Class (PFC) Vicente Marcon of the 62nd IB, also made supreme sacrifice in defending helpless civilians in Kabankalan City against threat and intimidation caused by the rebels.
“We also express our deepest sympathy to the family of our Spearhead Troopers who paid the ultimate sacrifice in serving the Negrenses," Dolina said.
Dolina also said, the Philippine Army remains committed to serve and protect the people from all forms of violence.