‘DJ Richard’ dies at 59

Isagani de Castro Jr.

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‘DJ Richard’ dies at 59

GOLDEN MEMORIES. Disc Jockey Richard Enriquez dies on Wednesday, October 25, 2023. He was known for his graveyard radio programs on GMA Network's DZBB and ABS-CBN's DZMM/Teleradyo.

Screengrab/Radio DZBB Facebook

'DJ Richard' was known for playing classics and love songs in his radio shows on GMA's DZBB and ABS-CBN's DZMM

MANILA, Philippines – One of the Philippines’ beloved radio disc jockeys, Jose “DJ Richard” Enriquez Jr., died on Wednesday, October 25. He was 59. 

GMA Network, the country’s leading broadcast company, announced the passing of Enriquez on its radio station DZBB’s social media accounts.

“A golden voice with a golden heart, a good friend and a devoted family man. Salamat at paalam. Thank you for the golden memories,” said the station in its tribute. 

Enriquez hosted the radio show, Golden Memories with Richard Enriquez, on Radio DZBB on 594 kilohertz on the AM band, from midnight to 3 am. 

Enriquez moved to GMA in June 2022 after returning briefly to Eagle FM radio of Eagle Broadcasting Corporation where he started as an FM disc jockey in 1985 before moving to AM radio.

For nearly 11 years, he worked for then-leading media and entertainment giant, ABS-CBN Corporation, where he hosted Yesteryears from midnight to 3 am on ABS-CBN’s AM radio station, DZMM/TeleRadyo

ABS-CBN lost its free-to-air tv and radio business in May 2020 after its legislative franchise expired and was subsequently ordered by the Duterte administration to stop broadcasting, displacing thousands of media workers.

Former TV Patrol news anchor and now TV5 radio personality Ted Failon, a close friend of the DJ and his former colleague in DZMM, disclosed on his FM radio show on Friday, October 27 that Enriquez had health problems related to his aorta. 

He said Enriquez called him from a hospital on Monday, October 23, after suffering severe abdominal and chest pain, and had told him he would need financial assistance since he was in a private establishment. Enriquez told Failon the hospital recommended immediate surgery that would be costly.

Failon said he advised Enriquez not to worry about the stress from the financial burden of the emergency surgery that he needed. 

“I told him to conquer the fear of death,” he recalled telling Enriquez. 

In response, Enriquez said: “Hindi na ko takot, I’m ready to go. Kasi alam ko ang sitwasyon ko. Ang kinatatakot ko ay iiwan ko ang pamilya ko ng may malaking utang.”

(I’m not afraid, I’m ready to go because I know my situation. What I’m afraid of is to leave my family with a big debt.)

Failon said Enriquez was eventually moved to the Philippine Heart Center where he was scheduled for an emergency operation on Wednesday.

Enriquez, however, was already having difficulty breathing and collapsed. Doctors tried several times to revive him to no avail. Before he died, his daughter Natalie told him to be strong and fight his ailment, after which a tearful Enriquez gave a thumbs-up before passing on, Failon recounted.

Enriquez left behind his wife, Lot, and three daughters. 

His wake is in Loyola Memorial Chapels on Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City from October 27, Friday, to October 30, Monday. –

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Isagani de Castro Jr.

Before he joined Rappler as senior desk editor, Isagani de Castro Jr. was longest-serving editor in chief of ABS-CBN News online. He had reported for the investigative magazine Newsbreak, Asahi Shimbun Manila, and Business Day. He has written chapters for books on politics, international relations, and civil society.