Yes, I don’t know him personally. In fact, I just became aware of his existence in 2010 when he was named as the new DILG Secretary under the Noynoy Aquino government. Being just a semi-current events person, I even thought that the reason why I’ve been seeing his face on the news then was because he was corrupt or there were complaints about him.
But I must admit that even as I was not yet sure of the news about him then, Sec. Robredo already charmed his way to me. Perhaps it was because he really looked a lot like my father who passed away just a couple of months before I saw Sec.Robredo on TV.
I was reading tweets that late afternoon of August 18 when I saw a tweet from ANC News that Sec.Robredo was one of the passengers of the private aircraft which crashed off the shore of Masbate City. Seconds after, tweets and retweets about that news and some updates flooded my Twitter timeline.
Perhaps I’ve been used to watching a lot of TV/movie dramas where the lead actor would be lost in the sea but eventually some fisherman would find him and he would be saved and he could go back to his family again after he’s recovered, that I initially thought the same thing would also happen to Sec.Robredo.
But no. In as much as the entire country would want the same scene to happen to Sec.Robredo and the two pilots on board with him on the said aircraft, it didn’t. Sure they were still brought back to their families–only this time, they were lifeless.
I’m a sucker for celebrity deaths and funerals and I always find myself crying whenever a famous person dies My sister even told me that I never let a celebrity death passed by without me crying like as if I know them personally. Yes people, that is just how I am:-)
BUT I’m not used to crying for a government official who passed away. I think I even told myself that if I’m going to cry for a govt.official, that would only be for Erap and Sen. Joker Arroyo since I’m a staunch supporter of those two (Yes, you’ve read it right, I’m an Erap supporter!).
Sec.Jesse, however, was a great exception. In fact, I think I cried a lot more for him than I did for Dolphy’s passing. Even just reading tweets about him and his goodness and good governance could already make me cry. Last Saturday, I was watching the livestream of the cabinet members’ tribute for him and I found myself sobbing in tears even if they were all laughing while sharing their happy moments with Sec.Jesse.
Sobrang affected lang talaga ang peg ko!
Every time I see news about him and his wake or see his pictures, I would cry. Sobrang emotera lang!
Perhaps it’s because he really reminded me of my father and the pain of losing him in a sudden brought back the painful memories of my father’s passing as well. When Papa died two years ago, I didn’t shed too much tears for him. I thought then that he had already enough of the pain and struggles with his sickness that it’s already time for him to rest his weary body and let his spirit soar high to heaven.
I didn’t know that the pain of losing Papa would be gradual–like every time I see people looking just like him or walks and talks like him, I would cry because I would remember him. And Sec.Jesse was one of those people who reminded me of Papa so much that I just couldn’t control my tears for him.
My tears keep falling whenever I see news about his death because my heart is also crying out to his family who lost a good man in the house. Listening to the eulogies of his daughters, I believe that he was a good husband and father to his wife and his daughters.
I’ve never, not even once, seen or read a negative news or message about him. I was backtracking some tweets with the #salamatjesse hashtag and I could even see some of his photos wearing only house slippers and shorts in front of a house (or a building?) on fire, as if on a rush to provide assistance to his people.
I think he’s really a good public official. I liked what his friend, former Isabela Gov. Grace Padaca said in an interview with her, that Sec.Jesse was one of those very few government officials who was able to prove that you can serve your people honestly even if you’ve been in the government for such a long time.
Perhaps, another reason why my tears just won’t stop falling for Sec.Jesse is because I’m in deep regrets that our country lost such a dignified and good public servant who could have been one of those few good men who could lead our country towards good governance and a reasonable change.
And I feel bad that it was only during his death that his good works were being recognized. This country should have known and take notice of him a long time ago, even when he was just a simple, low-profile, and unassuming mayor of Naga City. He could have been a source of hope for some Filipinos who are very skeptical of the Philippines’ government.
Sec.Jesse was a catalyst for change and his death only strengthened that. I believe that just by listening to stories about his good works, the vessel of hopes in each of the Filipinos’ hearts were being filled. I know that just like me, some 60 million (at least) Filipino people are now believing that indeed, good change is very much possible to the Philippines. I also believe that no matter how corrupt or deceiving some of our government officials are, in one way or the other, their hearts were also touched by Sec.Jesse’s passing and they were also inspired to lead just like him (*hoping and praying*).
I like what a friend in Facebook posted in her status during the day Sec.Jesse’s body was found….“lets give credit to Naga for having intelligent voters. Sana lahat ng Pinoy kasing galing nyo pumili.”
I absolutely agree with her. Indeed, the people of Naga City should also be credited for being able to choose a good man to lead them for 19 years. I also hope that the rest of the Philippines populace would be as wise as them in choosing our next leaders. Then good change will be inevitable.
Tomorrow as his remains will be finally laid down to rest, I am bracing myself for more tears from my eyes. And I won’t be stopping it. A good man’s death deserves a real good cry from the people, after all.
To Sec.Jesse, thank you for being a good leader to your fellow Nagaenos. How I wish I was also able to experience your leadership. Nevertheless, you are a great inspiration to many of us now. Through you, there was a realization among the government officials and the rest of the Filipino people that it is really possible to work in the government and still have your integrity and good values undamaged. You have left a very remarkable legacy to the Filipino people.
You have well served your purpose here on earth:-) Thank you and until we’ll finally be able to have our first personal introduction with each other in heaven:-)