By JULMUNIR I. JANNARAL
Camp Navarro, Calarian, Zamboanga City
The Littoral Monitoring Station (LMS) of the Philippine Navy in Bongao, Tawi-Tawi acted on an emergency distress call last Saturday from a cargo ship coming from Indonesia whose captain on board was dying.
“Based on the report, while Bulk Carrier M/V Ivestos was traversing the southern portion of Sibutu, Tawi-Tawi and heading towards Masinloc, Zambales, a crew forwarded a distress call to LMS Bongao seeking emergency assistance for the boat captain who lost consciousness around 10:30 in the morning on Saturday,” said Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan, Jr., commander of the Western Mindanao Command.
“The 3rd Boat Attack Division together with the personnel from the Joint Task Force Tawi-Tawi Forward Medical Team immediately proceeded to the area to check on the status of the patient but unfortunately he did not anymore respond to the medical aid applied to him and was declared dead by the medical team,” Lt. Gen. Vinluan, Jr. added.
The deceased was identified as Boat Captain Baltazar C. Cruz, 62 years old, and a Filipino citizen.
“The cause of death is yet to be determined. In adherence to the medical protocol, the cadaver underwent quarantine at Batu-Batu Dispensary in Tawi-Tawi while waiting for further disposition from their company,” said Brig. Gen. Rojas, commander of the Joint Task Force Tawi-Tawi.
Bulk Carrier M/V Ivestos originated from the port of Loboc, Indonesia with 23 Crew members composed of 21 Filipinos and two Greek Nationals.
“We commiserate with the family of Boat Captain Cruz who succumbed to death while navigating his vessel at sea,” said Lt. Gen. Vinluan, Jr.
Meanwhile, Lt. Gen. Vinluan commended the Navy troops for the quick response to the distress call. JIJ