War veterans who used to be stationed on the Truong Sa (Spratly) Archipelago held a ceremony in the central city of Da Nang on March 13 to commemorate 64 soldiers of the Vietnamese navy.
The soldiers died on duty 34 years ago while defending the Gac Ma (Johnson South) Reef in Vietnam's Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelago on March 14, 1988.
The veterans and the fallen soldiers’ families offered incense and then released rafts with flowers on Han River in memory of the soldiers.
Head of a liaison committee for Truong Sa veterans Nguyen Van Tan said among the fallen soldiers in the Gac Ma battle, nine were from Da Nang and one from neighbouring Quang Nam province.
Tan stressed that their bravery sacrifice will be remembered forever and that they have made the Vietnam People’s Navy’s history more glorious.
The event aims to not only pay homage to the soldiers who lost their lives in safeguarding the country’s sovereignty but also inspire patriotism among young people, said Colonel Hoang Duy Lap, former commander of the navy’s Engineer Regiment No.83 who directly fought in the battle at Truong Sa in 1988.
Dong A University took the occasion to present ten gift packages, worth VND1 million (US$43.71) each, to families of the fallen soldiers in Quang Nam and Da Nang.