Tuesday, September 24, 2013

2nd Lt Florencio Mikael Meneses: Salute to a warrior

We have another fallen warrior in the person of 2nd Lt Florencio Mikael Meneses, 27 of Bgy Tibag, Pulilan, Bulacan. 

He was fighting for his life after being shot in the abdomen during an intense firefight with the armed followers of Nur Misuari in Lustre Street, Sta Catalina on September 21. 

He died due to 'renal failure' at 4:00am on Monday (Sep 23).

He joined the military service as a cadet of the Philippine Military Academy on April 1, 2007. 

He graduated and was subsequently commissioned as a 2nd LT in the Philippine Army on 06 March 2011.

I was among those who received him in the Army headquarters  after the completion of their pre-deployment training sometime in the 2nd quarter of that same year. 

He joined the First Scout Ranger Regiment and immediately took the rigorous Scout Ranger Course which he finished in October 2012. 

After graduation, he was immediately assigned to the battlegrounds in Basilan where he saw action against Abu Sayyaf terrorists in the area. 

A serious person, Meneses was respected not only by his subordinates but also by his peers. 

Cpt Leonard del Rosario, the Company Commander of the 9th Scout Ranger Company, shared that Meneses doesn't love to drink alcohol but he occasionally joined the troops during unit-sanctioned social gatherings. 

When his company,the 7th Scout Ranger (In Hoc Signo Vinces) Company was informed of an impending mission in Zamboanga two weeks ago, he was very excited. To lead people in battle is always a Scout Ranger's dream. He saw it as an opportunity to prove his worth as a Musang.

Cpt Arvin Llenaresas, the Commanding Officer of the 7th SRC said that Meneses was 'very snappy'. 

"He is reliable both in administrative functions and also in combat. I have full confidence in him because of his positive leadership traits," said Llenaresas whom I talked to during the lull of the fighting in Sta Catalina today. 

Brave leader

Llenaresas recalled that he was leading his company to assault a cluster of houses when he last saw Meneses alive. 

"I was leading a section of soldiers in front, followed by my Ex-O and Mike (Meneses) who was trailing behind with his men. He was focused and in control despite the hail of bullets that greeted us," said Llenaresas. 

"The fighting was so intense that we found ourselves only 5-10 meters away from the enemies who were positioned behind loopholes."

"We took turns providing support by fire to allow the maneuver of our exposed soldiers when I saw him blooded with a gunshot wound in the stomach."

Llenaresas said that at least six other soldiers were also injured but they pressed the fight, downing the enemies. 

"I ordered my men to provide suppression fire as we evacuated those who were wounded amidst the enemies' interdiction fires that injured more soldiers. We were able to bring Mike to the casualty collection point and he was promptly brought to the hospital for treatment," said Llenaresas who was also with Meneses during the rescue of 34 hostages on September 19. 

Sound of taps

Llenaresas said that he was saddened upon learning that his Platoon Leader met with the Creator.

"He was like my younger brother. That is how I treat all my soldiers in the company. I couldn't even send him off due to the continuous rescue missions," he said. 

I can only relate to Llenaresas. I understand what he felt. 

We are a band of brothers in the Scout Ranger family. 

We fully understand the dangers of our profession. 

We are aware that anytime, we will be sent to dangerous combat missions to protect the people. 

We are always ready to offer our lives in order to accomplish the mission.

We are Scout Rangers! We strike!

Taps is sounded.


  1. Col.
    As I look at the casualty rate of climb amongst our brave men in combat in Mindanao, I wondered if how long the military continue to allow the rebels to hold positions and continue shooting at will. The army has a tremendous fire power, and well equipped to deal with this situations. I would speculate that by now the whole SITREP (situational report ) should have been reduced to just negotiations after all the fighting is over. This is the moment to show the terrorist that our military will always fight to the end to Protect and Preserve the Constitution of the land. A stern salute to a Brother in Arms, 2nd Lt, (Phil Army, Scout Ranger)
    Emery, Aviation Chief, U.S. Navy ( Ret )

  2. What a big loss! My prayer goes out to his and other fallen soldiers' family. But please, please try to find out if the talk is true that the Zamboanga crisis was nothing but a diversionary tactic of those involved in the pork barrel scandal. You need not sacrifice precious lives and limbs for the crooks in government. I have high respect for our men and women in uniform and I have relatives and friends who still don their uniform for our Inang Bayan.

  3. Anonymous,

    Sir the issue of pork barrel is the problem of Politicians.. not of the soldier's..

    I think they should focus more on eliminating the Misuari bandits than dwelling on politics..

  4. Rest in Peace brother. I wonder how long the govt. of the Philippines will send their men into battle to fight the rebels without good combat boots, rag tag guns and uniform? 100 billions pork barrel money could have gotten all that they need to conduct a war over enemy that has the best of guns and other weapons of wars that money can buy. Low pay, low benefits, low benefits is that what you call an Army who looks after its men/women in uniform. Colonel this got to change.

  5. Salute to you soldier.. You may rest in peace... May the Lord guide the rest of our brave soldiers who fights for peace....

  6. Sir Harold,
    Totoo kaya ang balita na diversionary tactics lang ang pangyayari sa Zamboanga para mailayo ang issue sa PDAF scandal?

  7. Ito na yong sinasabi ng co-employees ko, mga PMA ilang taon nag-aral at nagtraining papatayin lang ng mga walang pinag aralang rebelde. Do not tolerate their act, the government should do something about it. Nakakasawa na yong pagkatapos maraming namatay na sundalo arrange for a PEACE TALK again & again! Bulok na sistema na yan.. Marami na naman nasayang na mga may prinsipyong sundalo, sila dapat iniingatan. God speed!

  8. Is this another response to Sen. Pelaez's famous question, “What is happening to our country?” after he was wounded during an assassination attempt. Very sad indeed. Our prayers for the families of these soldiers and most specially for the souls of our dearly departed men...thank you for your service.