I just read the post Herman Sihas: Remembering a Sarawakian Hero by blogger Parochial Sarawakian.
It was a wonderful tribute to the man.
When many people throughout Kuching were ranting and complaining about how heavy the rains were that morning and also how terrible the flash floods were, and how everyone’s daily routine had been terribly disrupted, Herman sacrificed his own life, trying to save another.
I remember reading tweets and facebook posts that morning about how two people had gone missing/died due to the floods…but like in most cases, the faceless and the unconfirmed nature of the stories swirling last week made it seem less important than the other tragedies that we’ve recently experienced, such as the Quadruple Murders in Sibu.
After reading the media reports though, I could imagine how the late Herman Sihas probably complained like the rest of us that morning – about how lousy the weather was or about how troublesome the floods were.
Unlike the rest of us though, that morning he gave it his all to rescue a person in need, even though the odds of success were small.
He died trying to save Form 6 student Kho Ying Qi, who had fallen into a swollen monsoon drain.
Ask yourself – if you were in Herman’s position (doesn’t know how to swim) and you saw someone (not your relative or friend) fall into raging flood waters, would you have jumped in to help?
Or would you, like Herman, have no hesitation at all?
Might not be an easy question to ponder.
What is easier to figure out is that there is no doubt that Herman was indeed a hero.
Apparently, you’d need a committee to officially bestow him the honour.
I don’t know about you, but for me, he became a hero the moment he selflessly went in the aid of another human being who was in need of help.
He performed the ultimate sacrifice.
May you rest in peace, Herman Sihas. A true hero and inspiration to us all.
How The Borneo Post told the story:
‘Committee needed to determine award for heroic acts’
January 10, 2012, Tuesday
KUCHING: A proper committee needs to be formed to determine awards and recognition for heroic acts by civilians.
Minister of Welfare, Women and Family Development Datuk Fatimah Abdullah said that her ministry might seek an opportunity to award the heroic act of the late Herman Sihas at the state-level Children’s Day celebration this year.
“This will be one of the things we will deliberate on. I can’t answer if we will give an award to Herman because we need a committee to decide who can receive an award for bravery and selfless acts.
In the case of Herman, he is above 18 and the ministry in charge of youth could also come in,” she said when contacted by The Borneo Post yesterday.
She added that Herman’s courage and selflessness should be an example to society.
Fatimah also said that his bravery is honoured and will always be remembered.
Petrol station worker Herman’s body was found on the morning of Jan 7 (Sat) by Civil Defence Department personnel at Lorong Sungai Maong Ulu 3.
Despite not knowing how to swim, the 28-year-old from Lundu jumped into the fast flowing water together with an off-duty fireman in a desperate, but ultimately failed, bid to save 19-year-old Kho Ying Qi, who fell into the monsoon drain while walking along the submerged road following flash floods which struck the city on Jan 5.
Several co-workers described Herman, who only started working at the station a week ago after moving from another station in Kenyalang Park, as an extremely helpful and hardworking person who always put the needs of others above his own.
Kho remains missing at press time.