TACLOBAN CITY – Five-hundred nineteen personnel of the 546th Engineer Construction Battalion (ECB) of the Philippine Army (PA) were recognized for their efforts in the search, rescue, and retrieval efforts for victims of multiple landslides during the onslaught of tropical storm “Agaton” in Leyte last April.
Col. Proceso Rebancos, commanding officer of the 53rd Engineer Brigade, together with 546th ECB commander, Lt. Col. Joel Almendral, personally conferred the medals to the awardees during the 546th ECB’s 37th founding anniversary last Sunday, June 5.
Some 55 personnel were given the Bronze Cross Medal – a military decoration of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) which is awarded for heroism involving risk of life.
Recipients of the award were deployed during the search and rescue (SAR) operations when heavy rains, floods, and landslides were reported during Agaton’s onslaught. Their acts of heroism rescued 18 landslide survivors in Baybay City and 300 families in Mahaplag.
On the other hand, 58 soldiers were given the Disaster Relief and Rehabilitation Ribbon for their exemplary performance as members of the disaster response units that intensively took part in the disaster relief and rescue operations.
Four-hundred six soldiers were also conferred the Military Merit Medal in recognition of their meritorious achievements and dedication to duty.
The unit earned a 95.28 percent rating during their revalida and was given the Gold Trailblazer Award.
Rebancos lauded the crucial role of 546th ECB in the relief and rescue efforts that saved lives in the aftermath of calamities, particularly during typhoon “Odette” and Agaton.
“Your remarkable efforts during and after calamities bring the heart of the army engineer closer to the people,” he said.