CITY OF SAN FERNANDO — The Provincial Government distributed financial assistance to each of the families of the “Fallen 5” — members of the Bulacan Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) — who perished in the line of duty during the onslaught of Super Typhoon “Karding.”
Last September 25, the rescuers drowned when a wall collapsed while conducting rescue operations in Brgy Camias, San Miguel, Bulacan.
Recognizing their bravery and heroism, the provincial government through a resolution approved by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan here, distributed P100,000 financial aid to each of their families on Friday, October 28.
The “Fallen 5” were identified as Goerge Agustin, Troy Agustin, Marby Bartolome, Jerson Resurrection, and Narciso Calayag Jr.
Governor Dennis “Delta” Pineda extended his sympathy to the families, noting that the “Fallen 5” will be remembered for their bravery and heroism.
The governor recalled that some of the Fallen 5 were the same rescuers who assisted in the search and retrieval operations when Chuzon Supermarket collapsed due to the 6.1 magnitude earthquake that hit Pampanga, especially Porac town, in April 2019.
“Nagpapasalamat po kami. Kung hindi man po kami nakapagpasalamat noong time na iyon. At least po, sa ganitong bagay ay makapagbigay po kami ng assistance sa inyong mga pamilya. Asahan niyo po ang province po ng Pampanga at Bulacan ay patuloy po na magtutulungan lalong-lalo na po sa disaster,” he shared
The recipient-families of the Fallen 5 were grateful to the provincial government for the assistance they received from the governor.
“Pinilipit po namin nilalampasan yung pagsubok na nangyari sa amin. Sabi po ni Governor Pineda, maliit na tulong lang po ito, pero sa aming pong mga naiwan na pamilya ng mga rescuers napakalaking bagay po nito para sa amin. Taga- Bulacan po kami hindi po namin inexpect na tutulungan po kami,” said Michelle Resurrection, wife of Jerson Resurrection, the team leader of the Fallen 5.
Pampanga PDRRMO Head Angelina Blanco noted that the incident in Bulacan is an eye-opener for the government to prioritize the benefits of rescuers, given the risks they are exposed to.
“This is an eye-opener po sa Pilipinas, sa ating mga opisyales. Ang mga rescuers po natin wala po silang hazard pay. Noong pandemic nagtatrabaho rin po sila naghahatid sa mga COVID patients natin. Nagdidisinfect sa mga isolation facilities natin. Hindi po nila trabaho iyon pero tinatrabaho po nila. Kapag may bagyo lalo na sa mga upland and coastal areas sila po ang pumupunta para mag-evacuate ng mga tao. Sana makita po ng gobyerno. Sa mga LGUs natin dito sa Pampanga sana bigyan sila ng permanent o casual positions,” she said.
She added that 39 personnel among the 41 rescuers of the Pampanga PDRRMO were given casual and permanent positions after Governor Delta ordered her to ensure the incentives of the workers.