Saturday, August 8, 2009

4 honor guards stand motionless on truck for 9 hours

PDI, Thursday, August 4, 2009

By: Jocelyn R. Uy

who stood motionless and
braved the rains for almost nine
hours atop the flat-bed truck
that carried the late President
Corazon Aquino from Manila
Cathedral to Manila Memorial
Park were trained to do just
They were handpicked from
the elite honor guard units of
the Philippine Navy; Army, Air
Force and National Police,
Navy spokesperson Lt. Col.
Edgard Arevalo told the INQUIRER
last night.
He identified them as Pfc.
Antonio Cadiente, Airman
2nd Class Gener Laguindam,
Petty Officer 3 Edgardo Rodriguez
and Police Officer 1
Danilo Maalab.
"They're specially trained to
undertake such ceremonial duties,
specially to bear such difficult
task to be immobile,"
Arevalo said. He added they
were trained even to resist "the
call of nature."
Rigorous field training and
routine formation were among
the secrets to their remarkable
strength, he added.
If nature called, they would
have to do it where they were
standing, he said. But since the
four men were among the fittest
in the pack, it was expected that
they would stand still up to the
final moments of their task for
the day, he said.
The four honor guards boarded
the truck at past 11 a.m.
when police generals, acting as
pallbearers, carried Aquino's
wooden casket out of the cathedral
after the more than two hour
Requiem Mass.
They got off the truck past 8
p.m. when they reached Manila
Memorial Park where the
revered People Power heroine
was laid to rest next to her martyred
husband, former Sen. Benigno
"Ninoy" Aquino Jr.
"Apart from discipline inherent
in security forces, the prestige
of the various services of
the AFP and PNP is at stake
here," he said.
He added that he was inclined
to believe that aside from
skills acquired from training, it
was the privilege and the honor
to stand guard on the remains
of Aquino, "the epitome of sacrifice,
selflessness and
strength," that made them last
long, said Arevalo.
"That was their own tribute
to the former President," he

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