Family mourns death of Boracay paddler

Boy Ryan B. Zabal
Family mourns death of Boracay paddler
'Mabait siya na anak. Tinanggap na namin ang nangyari, hindi naman natin ito kagustuhan,' says the mother of Mark Vincent Navarrete, one of the 7 confirmed casualties in a drowning incident in Boracay Island

AKLAN, Philippines – Family and friends mourned the loss of 31-year-old Mark Vincent Navarrete, one of the 7 confirmed casualties in a drowning incident in Boracay Island on Wednesday, September 25

Navarrete died shortly after he was rushed to Malay Municipal Hospital in Barangay Motag in mainland Malay.

Dadalhin namin siya sa Libacao, Aklan, para doon iburol. Mabait siya na anak. Tinanggap na namin ang nangyari, hindi naman natin ito kagustuhan,” said Marissa, Navarrete’s mother. Navarrete was from Libacao, Aklan.

(We will bring him to Libacao, Aklan, for his wake. He’s a good son. We’ve already accepted what’s happened, no one wanted this.)

Hindi na siya nakapag-asawa dahil tumutulong siya sa kanyang mga kapatid para makapag-aral.” (He never married because he was helping out with his siblings’ schooling.)

Navarrete’s body was transported to a local funeral home in Kalibo, Aklan, for arrangements of his burial.

Aside from Navarrete, Comar Acob also died in Malay Municipal Hospital. Maricel and Johann Tan, Richel Montuya, and Rose Antonette Supranes were declared dead on arrival at Saint Gabriel Medical Center-Boracay in Manocmanoc, while John Vincent Natividad died at Metropolitan Doctors Clinic in Balabag.

Of the 21 members of Boracay Dragonforce and Boracay Dragonflies, 14 survived the tragic incident: Lanie Ordas, Jaylord Violanda, Marc Sabadao, Jao Javier Buenaventura, Kathleen Sabadao, Edwin Paradai, Yhen Aytona, Janice Lumbo, Robel Licerio, Mark Baccay, Julia Kurbaniizova, Kenneth Bandalan and Maggie Xie.

Von Navarosa, the team’s founder, is currently admitted in a hospital for further treatment.

The incident happened at around 7:30 am about 200 to 300 meters from the shoreline of Lingganay Resort in Sitio Tulubhan in Manocmanoc.

According to the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), the 20-seater boat capsized while the paddlers were training for the Kaohsiung City Cup in Taiwan on November 8 to 10.

Gusto nating malaman bakit hindi sila nakaligtas. Karamihan sa kanila ay taga-Boracay. Ganun talaga ‘pag ganitong mga buwan, medyo treacherous ang dagat. Minsan pag-alis mo sa pangpang, maganda ang panahon, at biglang lalakas ang hangin at alon sa gitna,” said Captain Armando Balilo, spokesperson of the PCG.

(We want to know why they did not survive. Most of them come from Boracay. The waters during this time of the year are really somewhat treacherous. Sometimes when you leave the shore, the weather is good, but when you reach the middle of the sea the winds and waves get stronger.)

Balilo said the Coast Guard and the police conducted operational response and search and rescue operations of the distressed paddle boat.

“One of the survivors noted the sea was calm when they departed from Bulabog, however, after the reef, rough waves gradually filled the boat with water. The boat sank, and the paddlers were holding on to the boat. However, strong waves and current made the boat [roll] over, making it unstable and [displacing] the paddlers,” acting Malay Mayor Floribar Bautista said in a statement. –

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