Actress Nova Villa was choked with emotion as she talked about Dolphy, her leading man in the long-running sitcom “Home Along Da Riles”, in a telephone interview with TV5′s “Good Morning Club” on Wednesday.
She said she was not feeling well Tuesday night and had slept early when she was roused by frantic phone calls from friends seeking confirmation of the news that Dolphy had died.
“Is it true? Is it true? Ako’ng tinatanong. Sabi ko I don’t know. Baka sablay na naman ‘yan. Makinig na lang tayo sa news,” she recounted to host Paolo Bediones.
Nova said she broke down she finally saw the news on TV. ”Dun na ‘ko nanginig. Dun na ‘ko naiyak. Wala na si Tito Dolphy. Iyak talaga ako,” she said.
She said she had to decline numerous invitations for media interviews because her voice had become hoarse from too much crying.
“Gusto kong humingi ng tawad sa mga media na di ko napagbigyan, di ko rin kayo makakausap dahil wala akong boses,” she said.
Nova was one of the few non-family members who was able to visit Dolphy at the intensive care unit of the Makati Medical Center.
“Nakamulat naman ang mata niya,” she said. “Pero nung makita ko siya, talagang nabagabag ang damdamin ko, at sabi ko hindi ito si Tito Dolphy. Talagang iba na ‘yung hitsura niya.
“At parang nakatingin lang. ‘Yung alam mong hirap. Mapapaiyak ka na lang kasi mapapadasal ka na lang sa Diyos na wag na lang siyang mag-suffer,” she said.
“Home Along Da Riles” ran for almost 14 years, including its spin-offs “Home Along Da Airport” and “Home Along Da Riber”. Nova played Corazon Madamba or Aling Azon, the sister-in-law of Dolphy’s Kevin Cosme and identical twin of his late wife.
She was all praises for her experience working with the Comedy King.
“Almost 14 years na every week kasama namin siya. Siya ‘yung tao talaga na laging may punchline. Pag nagsalita ‘yan, kahit galit, nagagalit din siya pero galit tatay. May punchline pa rin sa huli. Matatawa ka pa rin.
“At saka wala akong experience na hindi niya pinapakita yung love niya for everyone. At higit sa lahat, sa mga kaibigan niya pinapakitaan niya ng pagmamahal and to people na maliliit, mabababang tao,” she said.
Nova said she was most impressed by Dolphy’s humility.
“Mataas na tao siya. King nga eh, hari nga eh kumbaga. Siya na ‘yung mataas sa showbiz, and yet di mo makikitaan ng yabang, walang kayabangan, walang ere. ‘Yun yung trait na maganda sa kanya,” she said.