Army officer, 2 soldiers dead in vehicular accident

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    A FEMALE Army Special Forces lieutenant and two other soldiers died while another officer was injured in a vehicular accident in Prosperidad town in Agusan del Sur, the military reported yesterday.

    Lt. Col. Ezra Balegtey, spokesman of the military’s Eastern Mindanao Command based in Davao City, identified the fatalities as 2Lt. Mary Joy Salentes, Corporal Eldryn Mendoza and Private Arden Sumpio.

    The three were assigned with the Army’s 3rd Special Forces Battalion operating in the province.

    Injured was 1Lt. Robert Ching, also assigned with the same elite battalion.

    Balagtey said the soldiers were traversing the national highway in Barangay New Leyte in Prosperidad town aboard a Toyota Fortuner when they figured in an accident at around 1:45 p.m. on Tuesday.

    Citing a belated report, Balagtey said the soldiers’ vehicle, driven by Mendoza, collided with a Hyundai Starex vehicle driven by a certain Jaime Lao.

    Balagtey said the soldiers were on their way to Bayugan City, also in Agusan del Sur, at that time. Reports said the soldiers were to attend a civil military activity in the city.

    Sumpio died on the spot while Salentes and Mendoza expired at the a hospital. – Victor Reyes