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Recognizing Our Heroes of Today

Heroes are not only for those who became martyrs and led people to fight for freedom but a deserving title to everyone who is working their hearts out

Soldiers hoist a national flag after clashes with Islamic State-affiliated extremists in the mountain area of Lanao del Sur. Richel Umel, AFP

When we talk about "Heroes", we usually think of the National Heroes whose names appeared in History books, however, there are so many kinds of heroes existing in our community. One of which are the members of the uniformed services who have dedicated their lives to serving and protecting the land we are living in. Unfortunately, in their line, they have that unfortunate definition of a hero because there are members who went ahead in the name of protecting the people from the Communist Terrorist Groups (CTGs) who are sowing fear and destruction in the communities. It is appalling though that such an ending for a quest for peace could be avoided and that there are chances we could grab to have a more peaceful community but there are people who choose not to care and live like it's not an alarming issue at all.

As they oath to this country, their duties of becoming frontliners in any kind of disasters, events, or emergencies begin and they are mandated to dedicate their life to fulfill it even to the point of having their last breath in the act of doing their service but it is with high hopes that it will not lead to this extent. As frontliners, they are put in the areas to firstly guard and secure the areas or become the first ones to be deployed in emergencies to take care of accidents, conduct checkpoints, and become the errand men and women in delivering the relief goods to affected areas or communities. Without questions, they do their part when asked to do so and can even be asked to return from vacation during alerts and when situations call for it. This is how difficult their lines of duties but they chose to pour their hearts out and embrace their noble profession. They are the heroes of their own families for choosing to serve other people and having little time for their children. They are heroes of the land for merely braving the path of carrying the challenge and duties behind the ironed uniforms they are mandated to wear.

Just recently, the gunfight in Apayao has resulted in the untimely demise of a fellow Filipino in the hands of a fellow Filipino. Such situations are the results of the fights of a senseless ideology that resulted in armed struggle creating fears and threats to the communities which is why the government forces had to stop and neutralize them. While the fallen heroes are honored, it is also important to note that people have to do something to not put their sacrificed life in vain. The people should not only condemn but act together to help in eliminating these peace spoilers and encourage them to come home, live in peace, and have their issues be addressed on the table legally and peacefully. It is when we act properly and educate more people about how CTGs are not beneficial at all and in that way, we help in decreasing their numbers and avoid more sacrificed lives.

Heroes are not only for those who became martyrs and led people to fight for freedom but also a deserving title to everyone who is working their hearts out to execute religiously their sworn duty and help protect the people or country no matter what their positions are. It is a hope that there would then be no more bittersweet heroes but simply Heroes for their positive actions for the people, family, community, and the country as a whole. After all, Heroes, in this world are humans too. They have emotions, families, friends, and personal life whom their life revolves.

With this, may it serve as an eye opener to the public that we have our duties and responsibilities as citizens to cooperate and work together to leave no chance of these heartless terrorists to wander around every community and you can be our Hero in your own little ways.

Salute to all our Real-life and Modern-Day Heroes! Happy National Heroes Day to All!

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