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Huelgas adds military merit medal to list of achievements

APART from being a champion triathlete, Nikko Huelgas is proving to be a winner outside of sports as well, recently being honored with a military merit medal for his efforts to help combat the coronavirus pandemic.

Mr. Huelgas, 29, a Chooks-to-Go ambassador, was presented with a merit medal by the Philippine Air Force (PAF) for his part in relief efforts in numerous pandemic-affected communities in Tarlac, Bulacan, Tingloy Island, and Albay.

Last year, with activities limited by the pandemic, the two-time Southeast Asian Games gold medallist sought other ways to make use of the extra time he had.

He found it in being active in distributing goods, organizing drives, and jump-starting fund-raisers for communities affected by the pandemic.  

“We had some rough days in 2020 when we’d wake up early and arrive home late from our relief operations, bringing our goods to hard to reach areas and the poorest of the poor. When the world wanted us to stay home and safe, we were out there to help the best way we could,” shared Mr. Huelgas in a release.

Mr. Huelgas is a sergeant from Flight Alpha of the PAF after retiring from the national team following the 2018 Asian Games.

But he continues to be active in the local sports affairs as a member of the Athletes’ Commission of the Philippine Olympic Committee.

The Filipino triathlete said that this latest achievement is an honor he cherishes and takes special pride in just as he reaffirmed his commitment to making a difference in other people’s lives in everything he does.

“A big thank you to Brigadier General Aries Gonzales of the Philippine Air Force, Major Jacqueline Jimenez of TOWNOL, and the rest of the units both from the Army and Air Force that we’ve worked with in fighting the enemy, COVID. I would also like to thank Chooks-to-Go for always supporting me in my drives,” Mr. Huelgas said. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo

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