The commander of a Scout Ranger Company in Marawi City was killed while trying to rescue one of his team leaders in an establishment inside the main battle zone.
Capt. Rommel Sandoval, head of the 11th Scout Ranger Company, was the 44th Scout Ranger killed during more than three months of fighting between government forces and Maute Group terrorists.
It was posted on the social media post of “Scout Rangers Book” that the captain went to an establishment, believed to be a Landbank building, to look into the condition of his wounded team leader.
“The [Islamic State terrorists] were still shooting at the team leader when he was already wounded. Sandoval decided to rescue his comrade to save [him]from sustaining further wounds,” the post said.
The Scout Rangers Book added that Sandoval was still able to check the pulse of his wounded team leader but was cornered by Maute terrorists and was shot on the side.
Sandoval was able to fire back at the terrorists but the next shot fired by the Maute bandits was “fatal,” hitting him on the cheek.
Sandoval, described by Scout Rangers Book as a “skilled and talented” elite ranger, was accompanied in the rescue mission by Private First Class Sherwin Canapi, who was also killed.
On Monday afternoon, a C130 aircraft brought Sandoval’s remains to the Libingan Ng Mga Bayani mortuary in Taguig City.
“For [this]officer, his last fight has just ended. For the Scout Rangers left in the war zone, the fight is not yet over for the nation,” the Scout Rangers Book said.
Sandoval’s remains were accompanied by one of the Scout Rangers going to Manila.
Sandoval’s wake in the heroes’ cemetery was expected to be visited by President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday night.