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We are here thanks to you, noble people

Posted February. 14, 2023 07:48,   

Updated February. 14, 2023 07:48


There are people who willingly jump into dangerous situations when everybody else tries to get out of them. The Dong-A Ilbo and Channel A set up the ‘Award for Honorable Men and Women in Uniform’ to pay respect to the devotion of those in uniform, including soldiers, police officers, and firefighters. The 11th award ceremony was held on Monday for 14 uniformed men and women who fought to protect people’s safety and lives in the land, sea, and ocean. The total number of awardees now reached 139.

The grand award was given to police inspector Jeong Du-hwan and police sergeants Cha Ju-il and Hwang Hyun-jun, who were former members of the Korea Coast Guard aviation unit and passed away in the sea near Jeju Island due to a helicopter crash while trying to rescue a missing ship in April 2020. The uniform award was given to six uniformed men and women, including lieutenant colonel Ahn Jun-hyun who completed a pilot flight of KF-21, South Korea’s first supersonic combat plane, master sergeant Park Woo-geun who evacuated his colleagues after getting injured from a landmine explosion, and police sergeant Jeong Ki-wook who rescued five crew members from a stranded fishing boat even though he was severely injured after his rubber boat flipped over. Late police lieutenant Yoo Jae-gook, a rescue worker of the Han River police unit, who passed away while searching for a person who jumped into the Han River to commit suicide, was awarded the police for people award. We pray for the fallen heroes and wish a quick recovery for those injured.

”Small and large disasters continue to happen. Over 3,600 soldiers and public officials protected the habitat of Korean red pine against fire after an all-night effort during a massive wildfire in Uljin and Samcheok in March last year. During a flood in Pohang in September, the Marines rescued 27 people with an armored vehicle. Firefighters and paramedics did CPR and transferred injured people during the Itaewon Halloween crowd crash in October. They feel deep regret for being unable to save more people and are suffering psychological aftereffects.

There is no national border regarding the dedication of the uniformed people. A 118-member emergency rescue team consisting of the rescue workers of the National Emergency Management Agency and the Republic of Korea Army Special Warfare Command members was deployed to the site of a severe earthquake near the border between Turkey and Syria. They are making all-night efforts and saving people even though it’s much after the golden time for survival. Turkey sent 5,455 soldiers to South Korea during the Korean War, 741 of which passed away, and 2,068 were injured. South Korea’s deployment of the rescue team is to repay Turkey’s help.

The wife of an awardee who passed away thanked for the award by saying that she would cherish memories with him after she received the award on his behalf during the ceremony. We can carry on with our safe daily lives thanks to the men and women in uniform performing their duties right at this moment. We must not forget their sacrifices, share the grief of the family members of the fallen heroes, and build a society where uniformed men and women can feel rewarded and proud.