MANILA (UPDATE) - A former top Philippine National Police official died Tuesday following 7 months in a coma due to a helicopter crash in Laguna earlier this year.
Major Gen. Joevic Ramos, former PNP director for comptrollership, has died and will be cremated right away according to his relatives' wishes, spokesman Ysmael Yu told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo. He was 55, he added.
"He was supposed to retire this year," Yu said.
"Nakakalungkot kasi nawalan tayo ng isang officer and a gentleman at kapatid na rin natin."
(It's saddening because we lost an officer, a gentleman and a brother.)
Eight police officials including then-PNP chief Gen. Archie Gamboa were in the 2-year-old Bell 429 chopper when it crashed after getting entangled with power lines shortly after takeoff in San Pedro town.
The take-off site in Barangay San Antonio was sandy and the chopper's propellers fanned the debris, creating poor visibility, said Calabarzon police spokesperson Lt. Chit Gaoiran, quoting witnesses on the ground.
The twin-engine helicopter that figured in the accident was brand new when the PNP purchased it in 2017. Gamboa was then the head of PNP logistics and led bidding procedures for the aircraft.
Results of investigation into the helicopter crash will "come out in due time," Yu said.