Families left behind of the 101 soldiers and police personnel who have been slain in the ongoing operations in Marawi received financial assistance from some of the country’s top businessmen in a tribute event dubbed as “Salamat Magigiting na Mandirigma” organized by Go Negosyo’s Kapatid For Marawi program.
The families widows, parents and children of the slain came from different parts of the country and some were flown in to Manila, with Philippine Airlines providing two free tickets for every family.
According to elementary school teacher Nilda Santos, widow of Sgt Jessie Santos who also left behind 14-year-old Jenyl Rose and 11-year-old Jay Michael, the support shown by the people, in particular the business sector, is inspiring because the sacrifice of their loved ones are recognized.
“Nakaka-inspire na pinahahalagan nila ang buhay ng mga asawa namin. Malaki ang pasasalamat namin sa tulong nila, kasi yung mga namatay na iba hindi ganito ang pag-treat, hindi tulad ngayon. Yung pamasahe lang na papunta kami dito malaking bagay na tulad ng mga ticket galing sa PAL. (It’s inspiring to see that the lives of our husbands are considered worthy. We are very grateful for the assistance, because those who died before were not given the kind of treatment we are seeing today. The fare alone was already a big help, like the tickets provided by PAL),” the widow said.
When the call for support for government forces and the displaced residents of Marawi came, among those that immediately responded were companies under Lucio Tan that include Philippine Airlines and Asia Brewery.
To date, the country’s flag carrier, through the PAL Foundation, has airlifted more than six tons of donations amounting to about P370,000 from various donors including the airline’s personnel to the residents of Marawi who have been displaced by the ongoing conflict.
Along with the existing 20% discount for regular economy fares granted to AFP and PNP – whether on official business or personal trip, PAL has also extended a maximum of 40 kilos baggage allowance to all military personnel traveling on official duty such as deployment to critical areas, peacekeeping assignments or other official travel.
Agua Vida, a subsidiary of ABI, sent two mobile water stations to military camps to provide a total capacity of 4,000 gallons safe drinking water per day for soldiers on active duty in Iligan and Marawi cities. ABI also distributes Absolute white-label bottled water to both the evacuation centers and military camps.