by Mike Baños
Military officials from the Philippine Armed Forces lauded the guerrillas of the Resistance Movement in Mindanao during two events held Monday, 13 March 2023 commemorating the 81st anniversary of Gen. Douglas MacArthur’s Arrival in Cagayan on 13 March 1942.
“Nawa ay magsilbi din ang araw na ito bilang pagpupugay sa ating mga dating kasamahan, lalo na yaong mga nasugatan at nagbuwis ng kanilang buhay, alang-alang sa ating bandila,” read Col. Ted B. Dumosmog, Assistant Division Commander for Reservists and Retirees Affairs, 4th Infantry Diamond Division, Philippine Army who read the message of 4th ID Commander Major General Wilbur C. Mamawag during the official turnover of the PT-41 scale model from its donors to the Cagayan de Oro City Government at the MacArthur Memorial Marker at Bgy. Macabalan, Cagayan de Oro City in the morning of 13 March 2023.
“Nawa ay hindi natin makalimutan ang kanilang sakripisyo at kabayanihan, sapagka’t ang dugo na kanilang inaalay ang siyang nagpaatingkad sa kulay ng ating watawat. Panindigan nila ang tunay na kahulugan ng salitang sundalo kung kaya’t nararapat lamang na sila ay panantilihan buhay sa ating mga alaala.”
(May this day serve to honor our fellow soldiers, especially those who were wounded, and gave up their lives, in the service of our flag. Hopefully we won’t forget their sacrifice and heroism because the blood they offered is the color that brightens the colors of our flag. They stood fast to show the true meaning what it is to be soldier, so it’s just right that they should forever remain alive in our memories.)
While we will never be able to fully repay the debt owed to those who died defending our country, we must do everything we can to honor those who have worn the uniform of this great nation, and their families who have made significant sacrifices on our behalf.
Brig. Gen. Joel M. Paloma, Assistant Division Commander, 4th Infantry Diamond Division, Philippine Army, expressed a similar sentiment as he read from the message of Major General Mamawag during the launching program of the Mindanao Guerrillas Exhibit held at the Elsa P. Pelaez Memorial Library, Liceo de Cagayan University, held later in the afternoon of the same day.
“Every life lost is a tragedy, it is a loss to our nation. We can only hope that the anguish of the families of our fallen heroes is tempered by the knowledge that their loved ones died for a noble cause.”
“As defenders of the people, we must never waver in our duties, and never waste the sacrifice of the veterans in their quest for freedom. It is because of their supreme sacrifice that we now enjoy our democracy. The defense of our freedom is not only just for those in the military. Each of us shares that duty and responsibility.”
“The Armed Forces are here to continue what our veterans did to defend our country from various security threats, be it foreign or domestic. We are here to protect our freedom and the freedom of our future generations.”
“Let us always remember and honor our veterans. We salute them and pledge that we will never forget their sacrifices.”