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Comedian Tado among 14 dead in bus accident in Bontoc

Comedian Arvin Jimenez also known as “Tado” was among those confirmed dead in a bus accident at Mountain Province that claimed the lives of 13 others Friday morning.

The news was relayed to InterAksyon by writer and radio/TV host Gang Badoy. News5 earlier reported that a Florida Bus vehicle carrying over 40 passengers en route to Mountain Province from Sampaloc, Manila fell off a cliff in Barangay Talubin at around 7AM.

Badoy said that among the 14 pronounced dead by Bondoc General Hospital Dra. Natividad Opreso, eight were so far identified.

Two foreigners — a Dutch and a Canadian — were among the fatalities, while another foreigner was among the 33 critically injured, said Maj. Emmanuel Garcia, commander of the 1st Civil Relations Group of the Civil Relations Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

Garcia identified the foreign fatalities as Anna Van Deven from The Netherlands and Alex Laring from Canada. The third foreigner who survived the incident is named Bernard Bunhard, also from The Netherlands.

The other five dead passengers were identified as Marcial Barando, Andrew Sicam, Natividad Ngawa, Gerard Baja, and Ana Alaba.

Tado had posted a photo of a bus bound for Bontoc on his Instagram account Thursday night, with the caption: “Long trip, as in trip trip.”

Hours later, he posted a photo of several pumpkins at his Instagram page with the caption, “Bigla ko na alala, grades ko sa eskwela”. The post, however, also revealed his location as “Florida Bus Stop Over – Sta Fe”.

Distinguished by his long wavy hair and retro spectacles, Tado was best known for playing himself in the reality comedy show “Strangebrew”, which initially aired in local UHF channel, UNTV in 2001 before it was also picked up by Studio 23 and the government network People’s Television.

He later appeared as a mainstay of such shows like “Magandang Tanghali Bayan”, “OK Fine Whatever” and “Happy Yipee Yehey”. In recent years, he often appeared as a guest judge for such reality competition shows like TV5’s “Talentadong Pinoy” and “Junior Master Chef Pinoy Edition” as well as for the main talent portion of “It’s Showtime”.

He was last known as a mainstay of the TV5 gag show “Tropa Mo Ko Unli” and a co-host of the popular radio show “The BrewRATS Repulic”, together with fellow funnyman Ramon Bautista and “Strange Brew” co-star Angel Rivero.

His last high-profile project was a supporting role in the Metro Manila Film Festival comedy “My Little Bossings”.

In addition to being a popular comedian, Tado was also an entrepreneur who designed his own T-shirt line, Limitado, and operated a store carrying these items together with his wife.

Tado had been a crusader of sorts outside of his role as comic. He was an active figure in the anti-tobacco movement, according to the Southeast Asian Tobacco Control Alliance, and was also involved in rebuilding efforts for Yolanda victims in Leyte and Samar.