THE Philippine Army is investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of Brig. Gen. Daniel Lucero, commander of the Army’s 1st Infantry “Tabak” Division, who died Sunday after scuba diving in Zamboanga del Sur.
Army spokesman Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang on Monday said the probe is standard procedure, adding that among the things that would be looked into was the claim of Lucero’s wife that his diving gear was defective, and who owns the equipment.
“As a matter of policy, units submit investigation reports in cases of death of their personnel,” he said. “We are not yet sure who owns the (scuba) gear.”
Lucero had a heart attack on Sunday after diving at Tabak beach in Tukuran, Zamboanga del Sur.
Cabangbang said the incident happened during the reception outing for the newly assigned 21 second lieutenants to the 1st ID. Among the guests were the general’s wife Maria Consuelo, and their only child, Paula Divina.
“He was immediately evacuated to Mendero Hospital in Pagadian City for medical treatment but was later pronounced dead by the attending physician,” he said.
Lucero’s remains are at the Tabak Chapel and will be transferred on Tuesday to the Army general headquarters in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City.
Lucero, 54, was a member of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) “Matikas” Class of 1983. He got his general’s star in October 2012.
Before his appointment as 1st ID commander, he commanded the 103 Infantry Brigade. He was spokesman of the then Southern Command, now known as Western Mindanao Command, during the time of former chief of staff Gen. Narciso Abaya.
Lucero had extensive experience in the Army’s civil military operations.
WILLIAM B. DEPASUPIL