‘Why did they kill Aldrin, my good son?’
Three days after the death of his son, a stinging question still burned in Carlito Jore’s mind: Who would take away his child from him?
Jore was in Ilocos Sur province, working as a carpenter in a government project, when a phone call from his wife broke the terrible news: “Our Aldrin is gone.”
Within hours, Jore was on a bus rushing back to their small home in Barangay Commonwealth, Quezon City.
Around 5:30 p.m. on Monday, after getting a haircut, 16-year-old Aldrin Jore was walking home on Martan Street when he was shot twice in the head by a lone gunman, who waited for him in front of a small store two blocks from the victim’s residence.
The boy died on the spot. A stray bullet hit a bystander, Winifreda Mendoza, 43, in the right leg.
Both the police and barangay officials said Aldrin, an excelling Grade 8 student and the president of his class at Commonwealth High School, could not possibly be a target of gunmen who have drug suspects on their hit list.
Almost everyone in his neighborhood was aware of Aldrin’s future plans—including his dream to be a professional makeup artist. In fact, his father said, he had been earning on the side by doing the makeup of the performers in shows or programs held by their barangay.
His family has long accepted Aldrin, the fifth of six children, to be gay.
“Now, there’s nothing we can do. They took away his dream,” the elder Jore told the Inquirer on Thursday.
On the day of the attack, the victim’s youngest sibling was walking home from school with his classmates when he heard the gunshots.
“We thought they were just firecrackers,” the young boy said. “But when we saw the body, I ran home. I only knew later that it was my Kuya (elder brother.”
Senior Insp. Elmer Monsalve, head of the QCPD homicide division, said the police were still investigating the motive behind the killing.
“We are looking whether he had any fights in school,” he said.
There were no closed-circuit television cameras in the area that could have recorded the crime, but the QCPD has since produced a composite sketch of the gunman, who fled the scene on foot.
For Aldrin’s father, the hard questions remained as he steeled himself for his son’s burial on Sunday.
“I fear for my other children; I don’t even let them out of the house at night anymore,” he said, alluding to the recent killings of other youths in other cities, including Kian Loyd delos Santos, 17; Carl Angelo Arnaiz, 19; and Reynaldo de Guzman, 14, in Caloocan.
“But why would they kill those who haven’t done anything wrong?” he asked. “Aldrin was a good son.”
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.