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Makilala Rescue: Hero Bystanders Rise to the Occasion

With all that’s happening in the world, we could all use a little bit of good news. Yes, people have the capacity for evil. However, when the need arises, the hero within us can surface. The case of the Makilala Rescue is one such situation – out of it rose heroes.

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It was a rainy Thursday in August. Necel Cortez, 3 years old, and Yanis Bioc, 7 years old, were playing near a river. It was just another rainy day, but the rivers in Cotabato were overflowing. Not mindful of the danger, the two children were busy playing despite the unrelenting rain.

Without warning, the two children slipped and fell from a makeshift wooden bridge. The rampaging water swept them away, and it seemed that all hope was lost.

What happened next, no one could’ve expected. Watch it in the video below:

Heroes rising to the occasion

The video, captured by Makilala local Leo Mart Gallardo Balicog, showed that people worked together to rescue the children. Bystander Cesar Pampangan saw the child being swept away by the raging river, and he immediately jumped in to save her.

The other bystanders who helped save the children were identified as Nobenloi Laresa, Richard Cuenca, Julius Onto, Ramcis Damali, and Anthony Angab. The children were brought immediately to a local hospital; they were banged up and bruised, but alive.

Overwhelming proof of the human capacity for good

What makes the Makilala Rescue so touching is that it is a perfect example of the goodness of humans. There are cases as such, when faced with adversity, that we automatically act on instincts of preserving not just ourselves, but others. The bystanders rushed to the help of the two children, without regard for their own safety.

Cotabato Governor Nancy Catamco recognized the heroic efforts of the men. Because of their bravery, they were offered jobs to be part of the rescue team of the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.

We need more heroes like the Makilala Rescue bystanders, who risked life and limb to save two children from certain death. Stories like this should flood the headlines, and prove that the world that we’re living in isn’t so horrible after all.

READ: OFW Heroes at the frontlines of COVID-19 battle

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