Mayor Beng pays last respects to slain soldiers PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 01 September 2016 11:48

By SHEILA COVARRUBIAS

Mayor Beng Climaco on Wednesday joined President Rodrigo Duterte in paying last respects to the 15 soldiers slain during the August 29 gun battle with Abu Sayyaf terrorists in Jolo.

President Duterte arrived around 1pm at the Edwin Andrews Air Base in Sta. Maria and immediately proceeded to the Western Mindanao Command gymnasium where the slain soldiers were lying in state. Together with Climaco he paid last respects to the slain soldiers and individually talked and offered financial assistance to the soldiers’ family members.

Mayor Climaco expressed gratitude to the President for his visit and for the support and assistance given to the families of the slain soldiers. Two of the slain soldiers are from Zamboanga City.

The mayor likewise condemned the tragic incident that befell on the soldiers, as she extolled their bravery and heroism for the love of God, country and people. She also expressed sympathies to the families of the slain soldiers.

On Tuesday night, the mayor visited the wake of the late Cpl. Saik Mandangan at his residence in Mariki. Following the Muslim tradition, Mandangan was laid to rest also Tuesday. The other Zamboangueno casualty is PCL Jilson Falcasantos of Armor Village, San Jose Gusu.

Climaco also offered the city government’s assistance to the concerned families.

Meanwhile, from the wake of the slain soldiers, the President also visited the wounded soldiers undergoing treatment in local government and private hospitals where he also presented financial support to the soldiers wounded in action.

The 15 soldiers belonging to the Philippine Army’s 35th Infantry Battalion and 21st Infantry Battalion were killed in a series of clashes in Patikul, Sulu Monday, August 29. Ten other soldiers were wounded.

The remains of the 14 slain soldiers were airlifted to Zamboanga City Tuesday afternoon. Airlifted were the remains of 2nd Lt. Ernan Gusto, Sgt. Jay Erwin Almohallas, SSgt. Ruel Catubay, Corporals Ronald Galloniga, Omar Raddulan and Saik Mandangan; Privates First Class Nestor Bacaling Jr., Jison Falcasantos, Gerald Yubal, Dhendo Dujo, Roselito Arnoco, Glend Cosicol Resma and Rogelio Vincoy Jr.; and Pvt. Jonas Lumayan. The remains of Corporal Elid Ismael, who is from Jolo, Sulu, were not airlifted. — Sheila Covarrubias