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Thursday, August 21

Where Were You 25 Years Ago?



Twenty-five years ago, I was with my mom and sisters in Pier, buying some PX goods when we heard over the radio that our leader, former Senator Benigno Aquino was shot dead at the Manila International Airport (now NAIA). We were so shocked and felt weak by the news, we just sit in one of the chairs in the store, we were speechless ("natulala") for quite awhile. I may only be 13 years old then, but this man has changed me, my beliefs and my early perception of what kind of politics we have in this country. I remembered my Dad writing speeches to be read by the young Kris during the rallies. We would watch Kris deliver the speech, we would go to different rallies, joined noise barrage. And oftentimes our car and our leaders/supporters would be seen on tv news or in newspaper photos. But we were not scared. Our friends, mostly Ninoy supporters were not scared either. We distributed stickers, t-shirts printed with Ninoy's pic, caps, fans to people as we went around Metro Manila. Hoping that sooner or later he would be freed. Then he was sent to the States by then First Lady Imelda Marcos. We were relieved that Ninoy would be safe finally. But when he decided to come back, of course, we were all so happy to see him again. Until that fateful day, we felt so lost (and angry) when he died. We were in his wake, saw him in his coffin wearing his white shirt and white pants covered with his blood. His mother would like the public to see what they have done to his son. This is really a heart-breaking sight. We were crying from the moment we entered the church until we left...I can still remember those sad, very sad days as if it only happened yesterday.

I only hope and pray that what Ninoy said, that Filipinos are worth dying for, still stands today. That indeed, he did not die in vain.

6 comments:

ysrael said...

nice piece of 25 years of ninoy memoirs.

Cielo said...

i was 11 years old din, hindi pa embedded ang nationalistic genes sa aking katawan then hehehe, all i know before is walang pasok....

my mom and sister got to go to the wake kasi kapitbahay ng lola ko sila sa times st...

but i really admire ninoy, lalo nya akong pinahanga sa speech nya sa US nuon and the joke :

a japanese investor pleasing Imelda:

"Imelda you are such a great person you "rob" the philippines"

Edelweiza said...

on february of 1983, i wasn't born yet...i was born several months after...sad. :(

Heart of Rachel said...

It must have been quite an experience to take an active part in one of the life changing historical events in our country.

I was in grade school at that time (St. Scho Manila). I remember wearing pins on my uniform to show my support for Ninoy.

lady cess said...

wow, i think it's great that you were played a role back then even though you were very young.

Annamanila said...

Who could forget that day? I was home -- on maternity leave, having just given birth to bonch -- and I followed the happenings on TV.

Soon, I would be part of the yellow confetti crowd, bringing our outrage to the streets.