Two swimming instructors under investigation over death of PMA cadet

From the Manila Bulletin (Nov 9 2019): Two swimming instructors under investigation over death of PMA cadet

At least two swimming instructors of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) were being investigated by authorities, after a first-year cadet was found dead at the bottom of a 15-foot deep pool of the academy on Friday, a spokesperson of the academy confirmed Saturday.

Philippine Military Academy (PMA / MANILA BULLETIN)

Captain Cherryl Tindog, PMA spokesperson, said they were already coordinating with the Baguio City Police which leads the investigation on the death of Cadet Fourth Class Mario Telan Jr., of the Alpha Company of the Cadet Corps of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (CCAFP).

“No foul play was found as per initial police investigation,” Tindog told the Manila Bulletin.

However, Tindog said part of the ongoing investigation is determining the possible liability of the on-duty swimming instructors.

“We are currently investigating the two swimming instructors for possible security lapses which led to Telan’s death,” Tindog noted.

“All needed actions and protocols are being undertaken to deal with any infraction and/or irregularity,” she added.

The PMA requested that the names of the two swimming instructors not be revealed yet as their culpability has yet to be proven.

Tindog assured no cover-up will happen as the probe on Telan’s death pushes through, and all individuals who will be found liable for the cadet’s death will be punished by the academy.

Initial investigation disclosed that Telan participated in his swimming class from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Friday.

Accordingly, Telan was with three other cadets when they dived onto the pool but only three of them surfaced.

The class took their next subject and when they did a head count, found out that Telan was missing.

A search was immediately conducted by authorities until they found Telan’s body at the bottom of the pool.

Tindog said efforts were done to revive Telan and he was rushed to the Fort del Pilar Station Hospital where he was declared dead on arrival by the attending doctor.

The Baguio police said Telan may have drowned during the swimming class. Probers are still waiting for the results of the autopsy to solidify their initial findings.

The PMA said they are grieving the loss of another one of its cadets.

“PMA deeply grieves for this unfortunate loss of one of our sons. All necessary assistance will be extended to the bereaved family and loved ones of Cadet Fourth Class Telan,” it said.

Meanwhile, all swimming classes of cadets were temporarily suspended until such time that the incident is addressed.

Telan was the third PMA cadet to have died inside the academy in just two months.

Telan’s batchmate, Cadet Fourth Class Darwin Dormitorio, died on September 18 due to hazing.

Meanwhile, Second Class Cedrick Gadia died from esophageal cancer on October 28.

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