Filipinos told: High time to be a modern hero, suit up vs new 'invader' COVID-19

Published August 30, 2021, 9:43 AM

by Martin Sadongdong

As the country commemorated National Heroes Day on Monday, Aug. 30, Filipinos were urged to draw inspiration from the heroism of the national heroes in liberating the Philippines from its foreign oppressors as a “new and dangerous invader” has come — the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

At least 1,940 personnel and government employees were inoculated against coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) conducted a three-day vaccination rollout at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA). (Photo courtesy of the PCG)

The Department of National Defense (DND) paid tribute to the forebearers who fought side-by-side against the Spaniards, the Americans, and the Japanese invaders to defend our nation as well as to the troops who protected Zamboanga City and Marawi City against armed insurgents and terrorists during the 2013 and 2017 sieges.

“Today, we take inspiration from their legacy and heroism as we battle a new and dangerous invader, the COVID-19 virus. The challenges we currently face call upon all of us to become heroes ourselves,” said DND Secretary Delfin Lorenzana in a statement.

The Defense chief, who also chairs the National Task Force (NTF) Against COVID-19, stressed how “one can be a hero and protect our fellowmen” by simply obeying the minimum health standards such as wearing of face mask, observing social distancing, and supporting the national vaccination program by getting the life-saving jab.

“Gaya ng mga bayaning nagdaan, mapagtatagumpayan lamang natin ang ating laban kung tayo ay magtutulungan at magkakaisa (Like the heroes who passed, we can win this fight if we will help each other and unite),” Lorenzana said.

Meanwhile, Lt. Gen. Jose Faustino Jr., Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), encouraged every Filipino to remember the life and legacies of the national heroes “who have become cornerstones of our country’s freedom, independence, and democratic ideals.”

He also praised all the frontliners who save lives in hospitals, produce food and other essential supplies, and keep the communities safe amid the pandemic.

“In today’s challenges, let us continue to honor their sacrifices and remember that we can all be heroes in our own respective fields and in our own little ways,” said Faustino, who is still in isolation after contracting the virus last week.

A flag-raising activity led by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) was held at the Libingan ng Mga Bayani (LNMB) in Taguig City to mark the occassion.