CAMP MELCHOR F DELA CRUZ, Gamu, Isabela – The Officers, personnel, and the civilian employees of the 5th Infantry (Star) Division headed by Major General Perfecto M Rimando Jr, grieved with the death of five of its members in Brgy Liang, Patikul, Sulu on November 16, 2018.
The five killed-in-action soldiers together with their 24 other companions, who were also wounded-in-action, were all members of the 41st Infantry Battalion who engaged around 70 Terrorist Abu Sayyaf members in a furious gun battle.
The five killed-in-action soldiers were identified as Corporal Renhart T Macad (Inf) PA from Torod Bolo, Tabuk City, Kalinga; Corporal Bryan Q Apalin (Inf) PA of Bangbangar, Bangued, Abra; Corporal John Raphy P Francisco (Inf) PA from Alibagu, Ilagan City, Isabela; Corporal Marlon P Manuel (Inf) PA of San Pablo, Cauayan City, Isabela; and Private First Class Jordan P Labbutan (Inf) PA of San Pedro, Rizal, Kalinga.
MGen Rimando Jr, expressed his sadness and sympathy to the families of the fallen Star Troopers by saying, “We mourn with the families of our fallen soldiers in Sulu Island, and no words can express how saddened we are for losing another brave Star Troopers.”
MGen Rimando Jr also ordered the immediate facilitation of all the benefits and assistance due for all the casualties.
As of this writing, the cadaver of the five KIAs was already in transit via Navy Vessel to Zamboanga City for disposition while the WIAs were evacuated at Camp Teodolfo Baustista Station Hospital, Busbus, Jolo, Sulu for medical treatment.