MEDAL FOR VALOR AWARDEES
LIEUTENANT COLONEL NOEL S BUAN O-9140
Basilan Province- 04 August 2004
For acts of conspicuous courage, gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty during a one hour and half- encounter against undetermined number of Abu Sayyaf terrorists under Commander HAMSIRAJI SALI at Barangay Makiri in Lantawan, Basilan Province on 08 April 2004.
While serving as team leader of the assaulting elements of the First Scout Ranger Battalion, First Scout Ranger Regiment, Special Operations Command, Philippine Army. Commander SALI and his group, including his brother Sahir SALI, was one of the most wanted terrorists groups sought by the Republic of the Philippines and the United States of America due to involvement in the series of violent and heinous atrocities. Aware of the dangers of becoming a possible hostage victim himself, LIEUTENANT COLONEL BUAN took the risk of putting his life as bait in order that Commander Hamsiraji SALI and his group will engage them. His innovation paid off after they were able to locate the specific location and even had the chance to talk to the enemies face to face that resulted in a close quarter battle. He personally engaged the group of Hamsiraji SALI in hand-to-hand combat. Despite the terrorists overwhelming advantages, LIEUTENANT COLONEL BUAN succeeded in reversing the situation by directing his men to aggressively engage and assault at all cost and to hold the line. This he did despite of the wound on his right hand.
This display of exceptional courage motivated his men, including those wounded, to fight on. Unmindful of his personal safety, he rallied and stayed in the encounter site and supervised the administration of first aid treatment, recovery of high powered fire arms. He made sure notto leave the area until the last wounded soldier was withdrawn and the dead bodies of Abu Sayyaf Commanders Hamsiraji SALI and Sahir SALI were recovered amidst the volume of fire coming from the enemy positioned in high ground. This encounter resulted in seven (7) terrorists killed, body counted, including the notorious SALI brothers, and recovery of six (6) 5.56 mm M16 rifles, two (2) 40 mm Grenade launchers, one (1) 12 gauge shotgun, three (3) rounds of ammunition for 40mm grenade launchers, hundreds of ammunition for M16 rifle, seven (7) bandoleers, four (4) combat packs with personal belongings and other subversive documents.
By these gallant deeds, LIEUTENANT COLONEL BUAN distinguished himself in combat, in keeping with the finest tradition of Filipino soldiery.