MANILA, Philippines – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Wednesday said it has identified 19 of the soldiers who perished in the C-130 crash in Sulu.
The AFP said that of the 49 personnel who died in the air mishap, 19 cadavers were positively identified as some sustained burns beyond recognition.
Those identified include:
- Major Emmanuel Makalintal
- Major Michael Vincent Benolerao
- First Lieutenant Joseph Hintay
- Technical Sergeant Mark Anthony Agana
- Technical Sergeant Donald Badoy
- Staff Sergeant Jan Neil Macapaz
- Staff Sergeant Michael Bulalaque
- Sergeant Jack Navarro (Philippine Air Force)
- Captain Higello Emeterio (AFP Medical Corps)
- First Lieutenant Sheena Alexandria Tato (AFP Nurse Corps)
- Sergeant Butch Maestro (Philippine Army)
- Private First Class Christopher Rollon (Philippine Army)
- Private First Class Felixzalday Provido (Philippine Army)
- Private Raymar Carmona (Philippine Army)
- Private Vic Monera (Philippine Army)
- Private Mark Nash Lumanta (Philippine Army)
- Private Jomar Gabas (Philippine Army)
- Private Marcelino Alquisar (Philippine Army)
- Private Mel Mark Angana (Philippine Army)
The AFP said 11 of the remains were already transported to their hometowns, including Emeterio, Maestro, Agana, Rollon, Provido, Gabas, Alquisar, Lumanta, Angana, Carmona, and Monera.
The remains of Tato are now being transported via C295 aircraft while seven of the identified cadavers are being prepared for air and land transport, the military added.
AFP Chief of Staff General Cirilito Sobejana said that efforts are still focused on the identification of 30 more cadavers still in Zamboanga City, and the ongoing investigation of the plane crash.
He also corrected the previous report of 50 total fatalities among military personnel, explaining that there had been a double count. As of July 7, the total casualties are still at 49.
“This is a very hard task since the cadavers were beyond recognition but we have experts supporting our efforts. We are doing our best to expedite the identification and the ongoing investigation without compromising its credibility,” Sobejana said.
He asked for the people’s understanding as investigating teams are yet to gather more pieces of evidence to find out the circumstances of the unfortunate incident.
“Our people can be assured of the AFP’s transparency however the investigation process takes time. All factors are being considered in our deliberate efforts to ensure the accuracy of the findings,” Sobejana said.