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Sep 8, 2020

PC Bernard Ical returns – details his six days being lost in the jungle!

Tonight we start our newscast with the heroic story of P.C. Bernard Ical. He was lost in the jungle but today he is back like he never left, Ical tells us tonight about his six days ordeal in the jungles in southern Belize. He credits his S.P.U. training and his positive mindset as things that helped him to survive.  But how did he make it out of the jungle? Ical tells us that it was the chopper that helped to guide him out to the observation post in Machaquilha. And it is that chopper touched down in Belmopan riding with the Commissioner of Police – there they answered questions from the press. Here’s the story – about P.C. Bernard Ical’s experience.

 

Andrea Polanco, Reporting

It was like a scene out of an adventure movie – onlookers, mostly from the Police Department, few family members, and the press equipped with cameras to document the moment – waited patiently for the helicopter to land at the Police Training Academy in Belmopan. Except that when it touched down it wasn’t an action figure who disembarked, it was the Commissioner of Police Chester Williams and PC Bernard Ical – the cop who went missing in the jungles of Belize for six days. It seemed like a theatrical conclusion to the ordeal that Ical went through – but when his daughter ran to meet him and he embraced her -  for the Icals that moment was anything but staged.

 

**NAT SOUND – greeting hugging family**

 

PC Bernard Ical embraced his family – grateful and happy to be reunited. It’s the first time they are seeing him since he left home on Monday August thirty-first for work and the last time she spoke with him was on Tuesday of last week when he left to go on foot patrol to Machaquilha. PC Bernard Ical was reported missing since – six days in the jungles of southern Belize. A massive search on land and by air was launched. On Monday, a helicopter, with Commissioner of police and the Minister of National Security on board, hovered over the general area where PC Ical was believed to be. By that afternoon, he turned up at the Machaquilah Observation Post.

 

Bernard Ical, Police Constable, B.P.D

Bernard Ical

“When I heard the helicopter, I knew it was going to one direction – to machaquilah. So, I said if I don’t go this direction, I am going the wrong direction. So, the best thing is to head to that place where the chopper takes off and maybe I can find my way.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“And when you saw that observation post – what was that moment like?”

 

Bernard Ical

“I felt grateful and thankful to God that I made it back to the OP.”

 

PC Bernard Ical was lost for six days in the dense jungles – but how did that happen? He says he lost track of the patrol, meaning BDF soldiers. He said he walked from seven to five during the day and he rested during the nights. Here’s how he explains it:

 

Bernard Ical

“From my view, I was following the patrol and like I lose conscious of the patrol and from there I mussie take the wrong track and from there I disappeared and got lost.”

 

Reporter

“Explained to us what you did when you realized you weren’t anywhere near the direction that you needed to go?”

 

Bernard Ical

“What I did was try back track and I couldn’t find the wrong track but couldn’t make it on the patrol had already departed. The weather in the jungle was no joke. It was rough. Winds. Rain. Everything.”

Reporter

“Where did you take shelter?”

 

Bernard Ical

“My shelter – sometimes I took it in the jungle and in the cave.”

 

He cites his positive mindset and jungle training as factors that helped to keep him alive:

 

Andrea Polanco

“What do you think helped you there to survive?”

 

Bernard Ical

“What helped me out there is like being in the jungle – get used to the bush life. What I learned from my bush life from my SPU career.”

Andrea Polanco

“Was there any point that you wouldn’t find your way back to the post?”

 

Bernard Ical

“At times yes, but I cannot stay in one place and wait for help if I don’t try to help myself. I would never get help.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“What was going through your mind out there – throughout this ordeal?”

 

Bernard Ical

“Lots of things. Lots of things.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“Do you care to share some of those things?”

 

Bernard Ical

“I was worried about my family. I was worried if the people around me are worried and I was worried about what will happen when I reach out and everything.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“Talk to us about the planning – the ration ….”

Bernard Ical

“Well, I cannot talk much about the ration. It was just like a survival for me but during the six days I survived. I only had sausage and noodles and with that I survived.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“So, you kept hope during the entire 5-6 days you were out there?”

Bernard Ical

“Yes, I kept hope and strong minded.”

 

And according to Commissioner of Police Chester Williams, he was the one who helped to guide the chopper in a direction that would help to guide PC Ical back to his base.

 

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police

Chester Williams

“I told the pilot to hover over the Garcia Farm area because we believed that if it is that he was lost, it could only be between Machaquilha and Garcia Farm because that is the area that has many picados that you can easily lose your bearing. And so we did that hovering over the Garcia Farm for about twenty minutes yesterday hoping that PC Ical would be able to see the chopper and that would be able to give him the ability to catch back his bearing and make is way out of the jungle and thankfully from what I have been briefed by PC Ical – that hovering was what helped him yesterday to be able to regain his bearing and make his way back to the Machaquilha camp.”

 

Andrea Polanco reporting For News Five.


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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