Viet Nam

Vietnam: Good examples of soldiers in saving flood victims

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Last month's Mirinae hurricane swept away many people and houses in Binh Dinh province. However, from those difficulties, Vietnamese people once again witnessed the spirit of mutual assistance from the whole community towards flood victims. Particularly, army men who overcome all difficulties to save people are the bright examples of soldiers in the peace time.

At 10pm on November 11, hundreds of teachers and students of the day-boarding secondary school of Canh Lien commune, Van Canh mountainous district were getting exhausted with hunger when they saw many soldiers coming to them, bringing along with a lot of rice. One hundred and thirty soldiers of the Military School of the Central Highlands Army Corps had walked 30 kilometres and carried on their backs 3 tonnes of rice, food and medicines for teachers and students who were being isolated from the outside world for days due to the Mirinae hurricane.

The only road with a 30 decree slope to the area was destroyed by the hurricane. For the past one week, the airplane could not get access to the area due to the torrential rain and fog. One of the soldiers, Ysu Ma Rah Mok said "Each of us carried 25kg of rice and food, passing the terrain full of dangerous slopes which seemed inaccessible for us. Despite being very tired, we were very happy to bring food to our people."

The next morning, the teachers and students found it hard to part with these soldiers and yet, out of the blue sky, they came back the next day with more rice and food on their backs...

Not only bringing food and rice to people in flood prone areas, many soldiers braving the floodwater has jumped into it to save people.

On November 3, a small boat was capsized by the flood in Dieu Tri town when the soldiers of the army section 4 passed through. Hearing the scream for help, all the soldiers, including Lieutenant Dao Truong Minh and soldier Ta Dinh Nhan jumped into the water to save people. After half an hour struggling with flood water, soldier Ta Dinh Nhan brought an old man named Giang and four other people onto the shore. On that day, they saved ten people more who got stranded on house roofs or trees.

During and after the flood, Air force B 72 and Regiment 940, the Binh Dinh military headquarters and C40 Army Corps deployed two helicopters to carry 40 tonnes of food, medicines and other necessities to the people in the isolated areas.

Although the horrible typhoon had gone, captain Luu Tung Linh, Politic Assistant of the Quy Nhon City Military Command has still been under treatment in a military hospital in Quy Nhon. He recalled: "After having been informed about the flood, my comrades and I took orders to leave for Phuoc My commune, one of the areas being threatened most by the flood. After that my unit was reinforced to help people in the two suburban districts of Tran Quang Dieu and Nhon Phu."

During 30 hours struggling with the flood, Linh and his comrades had saved hundreds of people. Despite having known that his family was also in the danger area, Linh could not leave his position. Only in the next morning could he be able to swim back home. The house at that moment was completely submerged under water. He tried by all the ways and means to look for his wife and son and he was even bitten by a viper. Fortunately, his family were saved by the neighbours.

Mai, wife of captain Linh said: "That night, only me and my son were at home. The water rose so fast, sweeping all furniture and telephone away. I could not call anybody. I held my son and tried to climb up to the roof to wait for the rescue squad. I was so much scared but still comforted myself that we were still luckier than many people. They needed my husbands help. And I believed that since my husband helped people, there would be people who came to our rescue. And that was very true."

Thanks for the bravery of these soldiers, 531 households with 1,693 people had been rescued. There were more than 2,700 soldiers from Military Zone 5, the Tay Nguyen Army Corps, the High Command of Border Guards, Naval and Air Defense Forces having joined in evacuating people from danger areas as well as helped provide food, drinking water and medicines for people.

Those above-said stories might not fully express the undaunted struggle of brave soldiers in Binh Dinh in late November. They are always considered the symbol of people's love and belief in Uncle Ho's soldiers.