The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Monday honored Filipino heroes of World War II and their contribution to the country’s freedom with simple commemorative rites at the Libingan ng Mga Bayani in Taguig City as the nation observes National Heroes Day.
Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea presided over the ceremony that was highlighted by the laying of wreath to the Tomb of The Unknown Soldier and the opening of the exhibit “Mga Bayani ng Ikalawang Digmaang Pandaigdig“.
He was accompanied by military host, Maj. Gen. Henry Doyaoen, the AFP Internal Auditor. Also present were National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) chairman Rene Escalante, Taguig Mayor Lino Cayetano, and Philippine Veterans Affairs Office Undersecretary Ernesto Carolina.
President Rodrigo Duterte, in a video message, honored the sacrifices of the country’s ancestors who fought for its freedom, as well as modern-day heroes who are fighting the deadly coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
“I join the entire Filipino nation in celebrating National Heroes Day. With pride and joy, we honor the noble sacrifices of our ancestors who fought to celebrate our country and establish the thriving democracy that we are today,” he said.
He added: “As we overcome the Covid-19 pandemic, let us honor our modern-day heroes, our medical front-liners and all essential workers who sacrifice their lives, comfort and security to serve our fellow Filipinos.”
On Sunday, AFP chief-of-staff, Lt. Gen. Jose Faustino, said the life and legacy of the national heroes have become cornerstones of the country’s freedom, independence, and democratic ideals.
“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,” he said.
The NHCP’s commemoration of National Heroes Day is themed “Kabayanihan ng Bawat Pilipino, Susi sa Tagumpay at Pagkamakatao” (Heroism of Each Filipino, Key to Victory and Humanity).