Tour guide drowns after rescuing tourist

Bugsukan Falls | OMPZ Photo

By Jennifer P. Rendon

A tour guide died of drowning after rescuing a local tourist in Miag-ao, Iloilo over the weekend.

Jessmar Gonzaga, 37, an incumbent barangay kagawad of Dalije, Miag-ao, allegedly swam to save a woman at the Bugsukan Falls in Dalije village around 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 3.

While the unnamed woman survived, Gonzaga was not as fortunate.

Residents rushed him to the Miag-ao Rural Health Unit but was declared dead on arrival.

Captain Francis Donne Lomahan, Miag-ao police chief, said four tourists – three women and a man – asked permission from their office to trek the area.

Lomahan noted that Dalije already borders the town of Sibalom, Antique.

The group contracted Gonzaga, who was vice president of the Tour Guides Association in Miag-ao, to usher them to Bugsukan Falls.

They went for a swim but shortly later, one of the women shouted for help as she could not move her leg.

Gonzaga immediately came to her rescue and was placed in a safe area.

But the woman’s companions claimed that the victim vanished from their sight without them noticing it.

They immediately asked for help from a resident who dived to look for the victim.

Lomahan said they have yet to talk to the woman that Gonzaga had rescued to shed light on his death.

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