WHEN Tailevu native Corporal Simione Rawaileba was murdered during the attempted mutiny at the Queen Elizabeth Barracks in 2000, the family of six he supported was thrown into turmoil.
But his sacrifice and that of the two other soldiers murdered that day — Private Osea Rokosirinavosa and Private Jone Temo Veilewai — remained a lasting albeit painful memory to the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF).
And during yesterday's memorial service for the three fallen soldiers, Corporal Rawaileba's widow said she remained ever grateful to the RFMF for all it had done since her husband's passing.
Mrs Rawaileba said though her husband had passed on, she was happy the RFMF continued to remember him and support her and her five children
Speaking in the iTaukei language, Mrs Rawaileba said the army had given her a job inside the camp and even called on one of her sons, Sanaila Rawaileba to take up the position left vacant by his father.
"When his father passed away, the army recruited him and now he is a Sapper with the engineers," Mrs Rawaileba said.
Mrs Rawaileba said she had faced difficulties raising her three boys and two girls in the absence of their father but added the RFMF had done much to help her.
Liku Veilewai, the widow of Private Jone Temo Veilewai echoed similar sentiments.
She said the compensation provided by the army helped her support her two children, a son aged 20 and a 17-year-old daughter.
Mrs Veilewai said there was a need for unity in the nation, adding that if there was unity in 2000, her husband may still have been alive today.