From retrieval to resting place, Tado’s friends played many roles
MANILA, Philippines – In death, he displayed the sum total of a life well lived, measured in the words and actions of his friends, family, and fans.
In the days after comedian, Dakila founding member, and entrepreneur Arvin “Tado” Jimenez was killed in a bus accident in the Mountain Province on February 7, those who loved him kicked into high gear to bring him home.
According to a press release from Tado’s family and friends, Tado’s brother-in-law, Joel Ramoso, with Dakila members Kate Lim and Stephanie Tan and friend Poklong Anading, went to the Bontoc General Hospital to claim the body. A group from Rocked, led by Gang Badoy, was also there to help the family claim the comedian’s remains, which were immediately brought to the Paket Funeral Homes in Marikina.
Tado's companion, Marcial Baranda Jr, was also killed in the accident. He was brought back in the same hearse to Manila.
The wake was open to the public on Sunday, February 9, at 2 pm, following the family’s private time with Tado in the morning. The family also celebrated the birthday of Tado’s youngest daughter, Tila.
The family later faced the public at the wake with their individual tributes to Tado. His eldest daughter Taja sang the Beatles hit “Blackbird,” which Tado’s wife shared was one that he had always wanted Taja to learn. His second daughter Diosa gave a speech about her father, fondly called “Ama,” and spoke of their unique upbringing, which focused on developing individuality.
Tado’s wife Lei also said that although they were “not rich,” his legacy and true wealth would be seen in the coming days following his death. This was what she told her children, she said, as she spoke to them of his demise.
Monday and Tuesday, the last two nights of the wake, were for tributes to Tado’s legacy. (READ: Tado, the offbeat hero)
A tribute from the Brewrats, the team behind hit shows Strangebrew and BrewRATs which also starred Tado, also took place during the wake. The Brewrats team, among them director RA Rivera, Jun Sabayton, Angel Rivero, and Ramon Bautista, is also said to have worked to bring Tado home and assisted with the funeral plans.
Friends from his alma mater, the Polytechnic University of the Philippines, also paid tribute.
A tribute video from his friends at Dakila, a group of artists and other individuals which aims to promote social consciousness via their creative skills and efforts, was also shown. (READ: Tado: 'Insanely absurd, downright brilliant')
Watch the video here:
Dakila's Leni Velasco also said a few words at the wake, saying, “Nawala man ang pundasyon ng ating organisasyon, iniwan niyang matatag ang bawat haligi nito. Kaya tayo nandito ngayon sa Dakila ay dahil may isang Tado na nangahas mangarap, kumilos, naniwala at nanindigan na lahat tayo, kaya nating maging isang dakila.”
(Although we lost one of our founding members, he left each part of our group intact. We from Dakila are here now because there was a Tado who dreamed, acted, and believed that we all could be heroes.)
Artists Dong Abay and Bayang Barrios performed, while visual artist Romeo Lee and filmmaker Jim Libiran, Jeepney Joyride vocalist Norman Bernardo, and Rocked's Gang Badoy also said a few words and recalled Tado’s commitment to his craft and to his causes. Snippets of Tado's work were also shown during the program. (Read: 'Bio-eulogies' to Tado)
Organizations PLM, BMP, and Sanlakas paid homage to Tado as well. Members of his SuporTADO Ka Movement, who expressed their support for Tado when he ran in the past local elections in Marikina, were also present.
Representatives from organisations such as Oxfam International, Task Force Detainees of the Philippines, Philippine Air Lines Employees Association (PALEA), the Partido ng Manggagawa, the Philippine Climate Justice Movement, and Greenpeace talked about how Tado helped them champion their causes.
Tado’s had been in the Mountain Province to work on what would become his final project, called “40 Mountains.” This was in support of his advocacy for environmental awareness. Tado would have turned 40 years old in March.
Friends, fans, and colleagues reached out to assist Tado’s family with the planning of Tado’s funeral and cremation.
TV star Willie Revillame shouldered the funeral expenses. Tado’s friends from his creative pursuits and NGOs, his fans, members of the communities from Marikina, where Tado lived, and from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Tado’s alma mater, donated money and also volunteered their services in the days after his death, easing the burden of planning and logistics.
The cremation took place this Wednesday morning, February 12, at 9 am. His remains were brought to the Loyola Memorial Park Ossuary.
Tado's family is seeking justice for Tado and the other victims. Last February 10, the family wrote to DOTC Secretary Joseph Abaya and LTFRB Chairperson Winston Ginez about the matter, appealing to the government for help for all the victims of the tragedy. – Rappler.com