President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on Monday extended his condolences to the families of the members of the security forces who perished in a helicopter crash in Bukidnon over the weekend and vowed to give them due recognition.
“Let me express my deepest condolences sa mga asawa ninyo. And I share your grief. Alam ko kung gaano na lang ganoon ang sakripisyo ng sundalo para sa bayan nila,” President Duterte said during a public address on government response to COVID-19.
“They died heroes. And we are giving them the one of the highest awards sa Presidente is the Order of Lapu-Lapu.”
The Order of Lapu-Lapu is given to persons in government or private sector who have rendered extraordinary service or have made exceptional contributions to the success of the President’s campaign or advocacy.
The Philippine Air Force UH-1H helicopter, which was on a supply mission from Malaybalay City, Bukidnon to a patrol base, crashed Saturday, killing all seven persons aboard.
The Philippine Army said the chopper encountered engine trouble and tried to make an emergency landing but later went down in Barangay Bulonay, Impasugong town.
Killed were Lt. Col. Arnie Arroyo, the pilot; 2nd Lt. Mark Anthony Caabay, co-pilot; Sgt. Mervin Bersabe; Airman 1st Class Stephen Agarrado; Sgt. Julius Salvado; and Jerry Ayocdo and Jhamel Sugalang, both members of the Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit. PND