FALLEN HEROES. The five disaster responders in Bulacan who died while conducting rescue operations in San Miguel town, Bulacan province during the height of Super Typhoon Karding will be given special tribute. The event will be held at the Bulacan capitol gymnasium, City of Malolos, Bulacan on Friday (Sept. 30, 2022). (Photo courtesy of the Bulacan Provincial Public Affairs Office)

CITY OF MALOLOS, Bulacan – Residents of Bulacan province and the general public will have a chance to give a special tribute in honor of the five rescuers who died in the line of duty during the height of Super Typhoon Karding last Sunday.

Dubbed “Salamat at Paalam Bayaning Tagapagligtas! Luksang Parangal para sa mga Yumaong Lingkod Bayan,” the event will be held at the Bulacan capitol gymnasium here at 3 p.m. on Friday.

It will be attended by the respective families of the victims, employees of the provincial government headed by Governor Daniel R. Fernando and Vice Governor Alexis C. Castro, rescuers from different provinces and cities in the country, officials from national and regional agencies, including the Department of Social Welfare and Development, Department of the Interior and Local Government, Office of Civil Defense, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, among other guests.

Katrina Anne Sabino-Bernardo, chief of the Provincial Public Affairs Office, said on Thursday the tribute will give way for the public's prayers, praises, and gratitude to the five heroes -- George E. Agustin, Troy Justin P. Agustin, Marby A. Bartolome, Jerson L. Resurreccion, and Narciso Calayag Jr.

She said a Holy Mass will also be held before the program, to be followed by the singing of the national anthem and the offering of candles, the Bulacan Rescue seal, crucifix, and Holy Bible.

"Testimonials from the people whose lives they have touched will also be heard as well as the messages of Fernando and Castro," Bernardo said in an interview.

The fallen heroes will also be posthumously awarded plaques of recognition for their heroic and selfless services.

Raul Agustin, Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Officer II, said the responders who died were seasoned and well-trained rescuers.

"They have done plentiful rescue operations in and outside the province. But as faith would have it, no amount of knowledge, skills, and preparedness will spare anyone when accidents happen," Agustin said. (PNA)