The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines – At 2:22 pm Sunday, workers at the Heritage Park in Taguig gently slid Comedy King Dolphy’s casket into the granite tomb that will serve as the final sanctuary of his mortal remains, closing a chapter on over eight decades of a life well lived, and lived always for others.
Moments before that, his children, followed by partner of 23 years Zsa Zsa Padilla, approached the casket to alternately pray and whisper final messages, their tears washing over the glass top of his casket.
At 2:28 pm, after everyone had put in their send-off flowers inside the granite tomb, officiating priest Fr. Larry Faraon enjoined the crowd to show Dolphy “how happy we are” as he would have wished. He asked everyone to address the person next to him or her and smile, and then to shout, “Mang Dolphy masaya kami, na kay Lord ka na.” He then asked them to clap and repeatedly shout, “Mabuhay si Mang Dolphy!” a greeting that befits a true king who lived in the Filipino heart in times of war and peace, of plenty and poverty, of sorrow and celebration.
In her final message to the man she loved and to the crowd, Zsa Zsa said simply, “Maraming salamat sa lahat ng pagmamahal na binigay mo sa amin, at sa sambayananang Pilipino. We love you….God bless us all..”
Confetti rained, doves were released, as the crowd cheered. Soon workers started to seal the above-ground tomb, its gleaming black image in dramatic contrast to the predominantly white background of tarps bearing Dolphy’s various incarnations, and the white dresses of mourners, except for Zsa Zsa who wore black. Dolphy’s favorite color was white; the other favorite color being red, which the crew from his home network, TV5, wore.
At the TV5 studios, Paparazzi host Cristy Fermin, joined by Paolo Bediones, Amy Perez and Dolly Ann Carvajal, annotated the live proceedings at the Heritage Park. They noted that the marvelous bronze casket--repeatedly described as fit for a king--had been bought by Dolphy way back in 1976, at a cost of P1.8 million. He had repeatedly joked to friends that he was blessed with a long life--he would have been 84 on July 25---because he prepared for his death too early.
In the end, black and white dominated the scene, an ironic sendoff for a man whose lifelong obsession was to bring color into other people’s lives.