Military fetes 21 gun-salute during burial of town mayor in Butuan City

October 30, 2015 10:58 am 

BANCASI, Butuan City, Oct. 29 – The volley of 21-gun salute broke the sepulchral silence of the graveyards as the bodies of Loreto town Mayor Dario Otaza and his son Daryl were laid to rest here Wednesday.

Capt. Patrick Martinez, spokesperson of the Cagayan De Oro City based 4th Infantry Division, said on Thursday that people from all walks of life braved the scorching heat during a funeral march toward the final resting place of the Otazas at the Uraya Memorial Park in Bancasi, 12 kilometers northwest of Butuan City, Wednesday noon.

The military and relatives denounced the communist New People’s Army (NPA) who admitted the killing of Otaza and his son Daryl out of trumped up charges, which were decided by the rebel’s “kangaroo court,” Martinez said.

“Everyone viewed him (Otaza) as a man of compassion and have a strong political will. Otaza marched his people towards his vision of peace and development,” Otaza’s wife Ligaya recalled during the eulogy Wednesday.

“To my son Daryl, though it is hard to accept, we will miss you. Thank you for taking good care of your siblings. I know God has a reason why this thing happens,” Ligaya stammered in tears and pain as she took a last glimpse of Daryl’s casket.

Otaza, a former NPA rebel, is best remembered for the surrender of 246 NPA rebels in Agusan Del Sur and since then has partnered with national and local government in bringing the services closer to the people, especially among the tribal communities.

In his eulogy, Maj. Gen Oscar Lactao, Commander of the 4IDth, said that he was proud of Otaza who died as a “hero” and vowed to continue protecting and preserving the gains of the former town mayor.

Lactao also warned the NPA rebels of the military’s commitment to support the people of Loreto and Agusan Del Sur amid relentless efforts to run after the killers of Otaza and his son in order to attain justice for the fallen heroes. (PNA)

RMA/CD

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