Mom dies hours before journalist son’s burial

Hundreds attend ‘Sir Toots’ funeral in Marinduque

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01:34 PM July 6th, 2013

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July 6th, 2013 01:34 PM

GERALD QUERUBIN: This photo was taken when he attended the Inquirer Southern Luzon bureau meeting in 2011. JOANNA LOS BAÑOS

STA. CRUZ, Marinduque, Philippines—A second tragedy befell the family of Gerald Gene Querubin, the Philippine Daily Inquirer’s correspondent of eight years in Marinduque, when his mother passed away Saturday morning, just hours before he was laid to rest.

Hundreds of people—family, friends and students of Querubin—turned up to bid him goodbye, filling up the Holy Cross Parish here for the Requiem Mass Saturday afternoon and the procession to the cemetery.

Querubin, referred to in his hometown here as “Sir Toots,” died Saturday last week due to a congenital heart condition.

At the church, Querubin’s father Yolando Sr. thanked all those who expressed their condolences as he also announced the passing of his wife, Gracita, Saturday morning at the family residence, where the journalist and professor’s wake was also held.

Gracita, 63, suffered a heart attack in their home Saturday morning. She was found unconscious on the floor when their daughter, Gracelyn, went to check on her in the couple’s bedroom at 9 a.m.

Just before that, Gerald’s former girlfriend told the family about a dream she had in which she saw Gerald and his mother together, Yolando said.

Gerald’s eldest sister, Sheila, said Gracita stayed most of the time in her bedroom during her son’s wake, “as she could not afford to watch the tributes offered for Toots.”

Gracita’s remains now lie in state at the St. Peter Chapel here.

Sheila said Gerald was their mother’s favorite among her four children.

Querubin’s students at the Santa Cruz Institute, where he taught Philosophy and Humanities subjects, joined the funeral procession, some of them carrying flowers.

A policeman, who directed the crowd out of the church, said around 5,000 joined the procession to Santa Cruz Cemetery where Querubin was interred.

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