Fernandez brothers remember their father sadly yet gratefully

by Elyas Isabelo Salanga
Jun 7, 2008
Daboy’s sons—(top to bottom) Mark Anthony, Rafael, and Renz—all grieve for the loss of a kind and responsible father. Mark Anthony made his father smile even as he was dying. He thanks Rudy's countless supporters in his father's behalf. Speaking for himself and for his brother Renz, Rafael said, "Yung pagkatao namin, malaking aspeto noon ay dahil sa kanya."

Rudy Fernandez's sons—Mark Anthony, Ralph, and Renz—have nothing but praise for their loving dad. Startalk's Butch Francisco interviewed Rudy's sons a few hours after their father's death.

MARK ANTHONY. Mark Anthony, Rudy's son with actress Alma Moreno, said he was able to talk to his father before he took his last breath.

Butch asked, "Mark, si Papa mo kasama mo hanggang sa huling sandali kagabi, nakapag-usap pa ba kayo?"

"Opo," Mark said, staring straight ahead. When asked by Butch about what message Rudy said to him, he replied, "Mga mensahe niya, alagaan ko mga kapatid ko, alagaan ko si Chelsea [Mark's daughter]. ‘Tapos yung mga huling sandali, medyo biro-biruan ng konti...Um, ina-uplift namin yung morale niya..."

The noticeable sadness on Mark's voice quickly prompted Butch to change the topic. Butch said, "Kilala kasi natin si Daboy for his sense of humor, sa last moments, nakuha pa ba niyang magbiro?"

Still serious, Mark answered, "Alam mo, along the way, biglang...gusto ko na siyang magising or mapakinggan ako. Sinabi ko sa kanya, ‘Pa, ‘pag nagkaroon ka ng pagkakataon na kumanta, kumanta ka. If you have time, please sing.' Tumawa siya. From there, maya-maya, umabot na sa point na pinapatawag niya best friends niya. Yun."

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Mark's stepmom, actress Lorna Tolentino, has been like a mother to him. Now that Rudy's gone, how would he comfort her in these trying times?

There was a short pause before Mark answered. He said, "Number one siguro I would pray for her. And yung mga kapatid ko, siyempre, kung puwede nila akong puntahan, puwedeng mag-enjoy. ‘Pag nabo-bore sila, tulungan ko sila Ralph. So one way of helping Tita Lorna na din, di ba?"

Lastly, Mark took the opportunity to thank the countless supporters who prayed for Rudy's health up to the last moment. He expressed appreciation in his father's behalf: "Sa lahat po ng nagdasal at nagdarasal para kay Papa, maraming salamat. Mahal na mahal niya po kayo. Yung buong buhay po niya, inalay niya para paligayahin po kayong mga manonood, so mahal na mahal po niya kayo."

RALPH & RENZ. Rudy and Lorna's boys have accepted their father's fate, but they mourn the tragic loss of a father who guided and loved them from the moment they were born. They feel thankful for everything their father did for them.

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Renzo Marion, or Renz, trusts that God would take good care of his dad. In a positive tone, he said, "Gusto siguro ng Diyos ito, so kailangan namin tanggapin ito. ‘Tapos, ngayon si Papa, hindi na siya naghihirap. Kasama na niya yung Diyos, so..."

"At least nakapagpaalam naman siya nang maayos," Butch added, "naisaayos naman. Nasunod ba ang mga gusto niya according to his will? Like yung funeral arrangements, among others?"

It was Ralph's turn to answer. He answered, "Hindi pa masasabi. Hindi pa tapos lahat. Pero maayos naman ang mga tao. Yung media, nirerespeto nila yung paggalaw [of visitors]. So, maayos yung paggalaw. Actually, yung isa sa mga gusto niyang ipaabot, e, yung lahat sana makadalo. Lahat makapunta kahit anong lebel o antas sa society. Kahit sino, welcome kayo dito, welcome kayong sumama."

How is their mom? How is she holding up and what are they doing to comfort her?

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Renz said, "Sa ngayon, magkakasama lang kami. Hindi pa kami nag-uusap nang maayos talaga. Nagpapahinga siya. So, siguro basta magsama-sama kami, e, maayos din..."

What lessons in life did Rudy give Ralph and Renz? Specifically, what is the most important?

Renz was the first to answer. He said, "Marami, e. Hindi ko masasabi na kung may isa lang. Kunyari, may ginagawa ako ‘tapos maiisip ko siya. Parang may sinasabi pa rin siya, e, hanggang ngayon."

Ralph agreed with his brother by adding, "Siyempre, yung mga napulot mo naman, e, hindi mo puwedeng ilathala bawat isa. Kumbaga, marami yun, e. Kumbaga yung pagkatao namin, malaking aspeto noon ay dahil sa kanya."

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Daboy’s sons—(top to bottom) Mark Anthony, Rafael, and Renz—all grieve for the loss of a kind and responsible father. Mark Anthony made his father smile even as he was dying. He thanks Rudy's countless supporters in his father's behalf. Speaking for himself and for his brother Renz, Rafael said, "Yung pagkatao namin, malaking aspeto noon ay dahil sa kanya."
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