C. Visayas top cop recalls own near-fatal chopper crash experience

Published March 5, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Calvin Cordova

CEBU CITY — Upon learning of reports that a chopper carrying Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Gen. Archie Gamboa crashed Thursday morning, Police Brig. Gen. Albert Ignatius Ferro couldn’t help but recall his own close encounter with death.

Ferro, the director of the Police Regional Office-Central Visayas, revealed that he had his near-death experience when the helicopter that he and his fellow police officials were riding in was shot at by Communist rebels in Surigao del Sur.

“It happened in 1991. I was a Lieutenant then. We went to check an encounter. We were hovering 100 meters above an encounter site when we were shot at,” Ferro recalled.

Ferro said the helicopter started to spiral out of control when bullets hit the helicopter’s rotor.

“The helicopter smacked into trees but luckily, the pilot was able to maneuver and found a way to land it,” said Ferro.

Ferro, who celebrated his 54th birthday yesterday, said the thought of dying crossed his mind when the chopper started spinning out of control.

“I just prayed. It really pays to pray a lot,” said Ferro.

Ferro closely monitored the conditions of Gamboa and his companions when he learned about the incident.

“Accident really happens. That’s why when I board helicopters, I pray before taking off and I pray upon landing. We really have to pray, ask the Lord to keep us safe all the time,” Ferro said.

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