Thousands attend wake, line streets for RobredoBy Juan Escandor Jr.
Inquirer Southern Luzon
NAGA CITY—Thousands lined the streets here Friday morning, waving yellow ribbons and shouting “We love you Jesse!,” as the convoy and hearse carrying Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo made its way to the airport enroute to Malacañang Palace, where a public viewing has been scheduled until 6 p.m. on Saturday.
The convoy reached the airport at 8:15 a.m., and the bier immediately loaded on a waiting chartered airplane bound for Villamor Air Base. Robredo’s wife Leni and daughters Jessica Marie (Aika), Patricia and Jillian accompanied the remains on the plane while extended family members boarded an AirPhil plane.
The bier left the Archbishop’s Palace along Elias Angeles Street after a Mass celebrated by Nueva Caceres Archbishop Leonardo Z. Legaspi, and was carried by six police officers amid dirges played by the band of the Escort and Honors Battalion of the Philippine National Police in Camp Crame.
The convoy followed the reverse route usually taken by the procession of the Our Lady of Peñafrancia, of whom Robredo had been a devotee since he was 16.
Until midnight on Thursday, more than 10,000 people spilled into the streets outside the Archbishop’s Palace to pay their last respects to their well-loved six-term former mayor. Two blocks of streets around the Archbishop’s Palace had to be closed to traffic and rerouted to side streets for crowd management, said Senior Supt. Antonio Gardiola, police chief of this city.
Eight Masses for Robredo were offered by different groups and organizations in Naga on Thursday.
Among the crowd jostling for a glimpse of Robredo’s flag-draped coffin was vendor Angelita Bagasbas, who arrived past 8 p.m. on Thursday.
“He helped me when my son was sick. I have to be here even for a moment,” she said.