Heroes Day is a day to celebrate and honor the services of the national heroes. In Indonesia, we honor our heroes who fought the colonizers to take the independence of Indonesia. In every November the 10th, every Indonesian citizens are celebrating Heroes Day to commemorate them. In Papua, Heroes Day is celebrated with national flag ceremony and social activities to the Papuan heroes
On 10 November 2016, Biak Numfor Regency hold a flag ceremony to commemorate the Heroes Day. Furthermore, they were also giving donations to 37 Indonesian independence fighters and their families to commemorate the Heroes Day. The donation that they give are directly presented by Biak Numfor Vice Regent Herry Ario Naap after the flag ceremony. One of the Papuan heroes that are being given donation is Junius Rapami, who fought at the Battle of Arafuru Sea on 15 January 1962 in Leopard Navy Ship. Rapami who attended the ceremony with his full Indonesia Navy Armed Forces uniform with his medals and decorations, is grateful for the donation from Biak Regency.
“In this historical day 10 November, we have been presented with this donation, yes this is truly a blessing,” said Junius Rapami. “The service of the Papuan heroes can not be measured by money but the retirement benefits provided by the local government are very valuable,” he continue, cited from AntaraPapua.
In other places in Papua during the Heroes Day, the Border Task Forces of Infantry Battalion 122/TS lead the flag ceremony and gave a speech to the younger generations about honoring the services of the heroes. After the flag ceremony, the Border Task Force of Infantry Battalion 122/TS gave 1,011 books with the pictures of Papuan heroes to the Papuan children and schools around Muaratami District, Jayapura City, Keerom Regency, Arso District and East Arso. The children who were given books are grateful because they can learn the history about Papuan heroes of Indonesian independence.
“This book is great, there are pictures of Papuan heroes in it. On the back of the book, there is also a story about Papuan heroes, thank you so much,” said Mandos, a student from a Inpres (established under the President Instruction) Elementary School, cited from cendananews.
Honoring our history and the services of our heroes is important for any nation because they are meritorious to our country. By giving donation and securing their welfare at old age is just one of the ways for us to repay their deeds. Teaching our children about the merit and services of the Papuan heroes are also important, in order to remember and appreciate their merits.