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Hoping for a miracle

ONE of two Filipino seafarers rescued alive, 30-year-old Jay-Nel Rosals, by the Japanese Coast Guard off Amami Oshima island in southwestern Japan. A third Filipino died. PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF NATIONAL AE

Despite the odds, the family of one of the missing seafarers of the ill-fated Gulf Livestock 1 is hoping their loved one will be able to go home alive.

Tina Amorin Villasan, sister-in-law of Ricdenez Ramirez, said they are continuously being updated by manning agent Korpil Shipmanagement.

“As per Korpil, the rescue operation is still ongoing. My husband, who is also a seaman and currently onboard now, told us to pray every single day. We have been hoping for divine intervention since the incident,” Villasan told the Daily Tribune.

She also worries for her husband Johnyson, the brother of the missing Ramirez, as he is stressed out by the incident.

“He cannot perform his work as diligently as before because he worries for his brother. Their mother also cries every night. We hid it from her for days because she has hypertension but she eventually found out,” Villasan said.

Korpil Shipmanagement and Manning Corporation president Elias de los Reyes had suggested requesting assistance from Chinese and Korean governments to do separate search and rescue operations since the Panamanian-flagged Gulf Livestock 1 disappeared in international waters and not within the territorial waters of Japan.

He said Japan temporarily suspended search and rescue operations due to bad weather.

De los Reyes said they are endlessly coordinating with the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Japan.

The 133.6-meter-long (438 foot) cargo ship carrying 43 people — 39 of them Filipinos — and almost 6,000 cows went missing at the h of typhoon “Maysak” on Wednesday. It was believed to have capsized in the East China Sea as it was sailing from Napier, New Zealand, to Tangshan, China.

There were also two crew members from New Zealand and two form Australia.

The International Maritime Organization expressed concern upon hearing of the tragedy.

“We are saddened to hear about this incident and send condolences to the families. But we do not have additional information to that already provided by the relevant authorities. We await further information on the search and rescue efforts,” the London-based IMO said in an email sent to the Daily Tribune.

Labor Secretary Bello said the other rescued seaman was chief officer Eduardo Sareno.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said they will be conducting further aerial search operations to locate the Filipinos.

“The DFA remains hopeful that the other Filipino seafarers will soon be found,” the DFA said in a statement.

with Gabbie Parlade

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