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Off-Duty Coast Guard Saves Over 60 Persons From A Sinking Vessel

Mark Andrew

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  • Seaman First PO3 Ralph Barajan is being hailed as a hero after saving more than 60 individuals from a sinking ship.
  • With his efforts, he helped the crew members and passengers of MV Siargao Princess survive until they were found by rescuers.

It takes great courage to put one’s self at risk for the sake of others but that’s exactly what an off-duty coastguard did when things took a tragic turn as he was traveling by sea. Seaman First P03 Ralph Barajan rode a boat from the province of Bohol to Southern Cebu in the Philippines when it started sinking about an hour after its departure.

Fortunately for those who took MV Siargao Princess that day, Barajan was among the passengers. His inner hero – and the skills he gained during training – kicked in and he managed to save more than 60 people from drowning.

Barajan secured 56 passengers and 7 crew members before even thinking about himself.

By his own admission, Barajan said he felt scared when the vessel began to sink. Despite that, he couldn’t help but spring into action to rescue others from sure danger.

He made sure no one would be left behind and that everyone had their life vests.

In an interview with the media, he shared:

“I wanted everyone to be saved that’s why I tried to bring us all closer. We tied ourselves together so we will not drift apart.”

65-year-old Maria Encarnacion Arellano, one of the passengers, is extremely grateful to Barajan for all he did for them. She also added that the group stayed floating in the sea for 2 hours before PCG-7 rescuers finally came. If it wasn’t for the brave and quick-thinking Coast Guard personnel, they would have surely died.

He’s a real-life hero!

PCG-7’s spokesman Lieutenant Junior Grade Michael Encina agreed that Barajan truly played a huge role in saving everyone. He also commended him, pointing out that gathering everyone in a single location was a great idea as the rescuers eventually had an easier time finding them.

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