KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews / 17 May) — A 17-year old boy drowned whle swimming in a river in Magpet, North Cotabato at around 1 p.m. on Friday.
Authorities identified the victim as Kevin Rojo Juanga, resident of Purok Kabisig in Poblacion, Magpet and Grade 11 student of the Magpet National High School.
Daryl John Trespuentes, one of the victim’s friends, said they agreed to swim at the Kabacan River in Barangay Binay, Magpet despite the heavy rains brought about by typhoon Ambo.
When the rains stopped at around noon, they started to swim, he said.
Trespuentes said he told Juanga to stay on the riverbank because he didn’t know how to swim.
The current was very strong at that time and only a good swimmer can withstand it, according to Trespuentes.
He said Juanga insisted on swimming but the strong currents swept him up to 20 meters away.
A rescue volunteer named Michael Jay Pacete was nearby when he heard shouts coming from the Kabacan River.
He said he immediately proceeded to the area and without delay tried to save the victim, did a cardiopulmonary resuscitation but Juanga could no longer be revived.
They rushed him to the nearest hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Reports said the victim resided in his grandmother’s house as his father lives in Bacolod while his mother works as a domestic helper in Singapore.
Both parents told their relatives in Magpet that they could not be with their son because of the community quarantine.
Juanga’s body lies at the Conrado Aguilar Funeral Homes in Magpet. (Malu Cadelina Manar / MindaNews)