MANILA, Philippines – Kian delos Santos’ death was all people knew about.
He was labeled as a drug addict and courier – tags used by the police after the incident to justify killing the 17-year-old in cold blood. (WATCH: Nung 17 ako…)
He is an addition to the statistics, another casualty of the drug war. That’s all he is to many.
But to friends and family, Kian delos Santos was a brother, a son, an uncle, a student, a joker, a cheerful teenager – someone who had big dreams of becoming a policeman himself. (READ: Our son, Kian: A good, sweet boy)
People close to him shared their stories about Kian, to tell the world that he is more than just a face. More so, he is more than just a number.
“Maharot talaga siya. Magulo tapos kalog lagi (He’s very playful. Rowdy ang always very funny),” his close friend Mary Ann Abes told Rappler.
“Joker, ganoon po. Laging patawa. Parang hindi kumpleto ‘yung araw na hindi siya nagpapatawa (He was a joker. Always making people laugh. It’s like his day won’t be complete if he doesn’t make people laugh),” she added.
Julie Anne Cajefe is another friend of Kian. She described him as very energetic and cheerful. In fact, she said that the boy was very happy on the day before he died. He would throw puns and tease them all the time.
That is why she did not believe the news that Kian was already dead until she saw one of their friends crying in school. Julie Anne was in total shock.
Kian was found dead in a fetal position, as he held a gun in his left hand. According to his father, this is one way to prove his son’s innocence because Kian is not left-handed. (READ: Nakaluhod tapos nasubsob’: How Kian was shot, according to PAO.)
Mary Ann Abes suddenly woke up at two in the morning on August 17, as if it was a sign that something bad happened. True enough, she found out about the news of Kian’s death when she checked her social media.
“‘Yong 16 ng gabi, mga 2 naalimpungatan ako tapos nag-online ako. Doon ko na nalaman. Akala ko hindi totoo. Doon ko na nalaman na totoo nga no’ng chinat ko na ‘yung mga kaibigan naming,” she said.
(On the 16th, I woke up at 2 in the morning and then I went online. That’s how I found out. I didn’t believe it at first.)
They will never hear his stories again.
A good student
“Grade 10 ko siya naging estudyante. Mabait si Kian kasi kapag pinapagalitan ko, ngingiti lang sa akin ‘yan eh. Tahimik siya. Wala siyang kalokohan na ginagawa sa school,” said Kian’s Grade 10 Technology and Livelihood Education teacher Augusto Mendoza.
(He was my Grade 10 student. He is a good kid. When I scold him, he would just smile at me. He’s also quiet. He did not violate any rules in school. He’s okay – submits school projects and assignments.)
He said he didn’t expect that his obedient student would end up in such death.
Mendoza described him as helpful and reliable when it comes to group assignments and projects. He was very upset of what happened to the boy.
Believing for justice
The Delos Santos family filed murder and torture complaints against the Caloocan policemen who were involved in the killing of Kian. (READ: Murder, torture complaints filed vs cops in Kian delos Santos case)
His friends and family said they will fight for justice for Kian.
“If you are listening Kian, don’t worry because we will fight. Don’t worry because we don’t believe those who are saying that you are drug addict. We will fight for you until we achieve justice because we know that you are innocent,” Julie Anne said in Filipino.
On Saturday, August 26, the Kian was buried at La Loma Cemetery in Caloocan City. (WATCH: Hundreds join funeral march for Kian delos Santos) – Rappler.com
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