Service to others is a brand of heroism


Barangay elections postponed...why?

For those with performing chairmen and kagawad, it’s fine, but not for those with lazy barangay officials. When do we rid our communities of them? Please, when it was still Mayor Isko, City Hall was more responsive to residents. Now, you have to rattle their doors and windows to get any assistance from your barangay officials. Please explain! The City Engineer’s Office and its chief, Engr. Armand Santos, are an exception. He has been performing is duties very well as he was in Yorme's time. He has a very able assistant in Engr. Josephine Saing.


Welcome October with its soft cold winds and falling leaves in varied colors. How many more days to Christmas? It’s the feast of the holy anels, so pray to your guardian angel to watch over you and your family!

So happy with my first Christmas plant, the red poinsettia, from my daughter Sandee in honor of her dad who loved this season. Yes, you can pass by Katipunan Road in the White Plains area and buy a pot or two to give your home an early happy holiday mood!

Now, we have been overwhelmed by the love shown by some corporate entities and their executives and work force to their communities and work force. And rightly so because it’s a beautiful feeling to witness the haves help the have-nots. Let us look in the heroism of some individuals.

With the onslaught of the fierce typhoon “Karding,” we have thousands of our kababayans out of their  flooded homes, their rice fields, which sadly were mostly ripe for harvesting, devastated, those with small and medium businesses at a loss what to do to recoup their losses.

Five members of the Bulacan rescue team — Jerson Resurreccion, Troy Justin Agustin, Marby Bartolome, George Agustin, and Narciso Calayag — died in a flash flood in Barangay Camias, San Miguel, Bulacan on Sunday night, Sept. 25, 2022. (Photo from the official Facebook page of Batang Malolos)

But the tragic news, of five volunteer rescuers drowning in the raging six-foot-deep floods in San Vicente, Bulacan should gnaw at our conscience. The bodies have all been found and it is clear these rescue volunteers in their 30s and 40s were no amateurs in their work. They belonged to the Bulacan Disaster Risk Reduction Management Program and had undergone proper training.

The drowned heroes, for they are now rightly hailed as “heroes,” are Narciso Calayag, Jerson Resurrecion, Marvy Bartolome, George Agustin, and Troy Justin. They were close pals who would respond promptly and heroically to any crisis situation in the province, whether a fire, earthquake, flood, or other calamities. They knew the risks, their families said, but they were committed to their job. 

A co-volunteer who had quit last year to go home to another province to take care of his ailing parents said that they were in constant touch with him and in fact told him about their assignment that early morning.

They lay in state in the provincial capital before being buried. Senate members praised them for their bravery and service to the community. Let us hope that the bereaved families be given some financial assistance to help them in their grief. One of them left his wife , a two-year-old son, and a young daughter.

When I first heard of the tragedy, what came to mind was the nasty judgment. “They were not properly trained and equipped!” Turns out, the rescuers were trained and had their life vests on, so how come they drowned?

A real tragedy, as it now appears they were hit by a concrete wall and engulfed in raging floodwaters in the river that ran through the barangay. The honors and citations are coming in for the five heroes, and I can only sincerely hope the disaster management groups examine this unfortunate incident carefully and plan better equipment, vehicles, and yes, training for all their rescuers.

If it’s to improve rescue operations and protect our volunteers, I don’t think we will mind where our taxes go. But we do mind the extravagance of an entire family tagging along on an official trip for one member of the family.

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Good news...we congratulate Lea Salonga for being one of Time Magazine’s 100 awardees as an influencer with global impact. Lea is really the pride of the country as a singer- performer in West End, London, Broadway, and all over the world. She was a Disney “princess” thrice over, an Emmy awardee, etc.

I have been a fan of Lea since she was a child. From her Annie days to Miss Saigon and higher and higher up the performance art ladder, from West End sensation to Broadway rising star! You have come a long way, Lea, sweetheart! Bouquets to your new international award! You do the country proud!

Have a mellow month, dear readers!