Dominic Ochoa says it took him about three years before getting over the demise of best friend Rico Yan

Dominic Ochoa recalls good times with best friend Rico Yan. While it took time for Dominic to recover from the tragedy, he says everyone should have learned a lesson or two about Rico’s death. He continues to close the gap by moving on. And if he gets the chance to "talk" to Rico, he will say: ‘Rics, I don’t want to talk about the past—yung nangyari sa atin... I want to talk about the present—yung good news."


Nagpa-misa ang ABS-CBN at Star Magic para sa 10th death anniversary ng matinee idol na si Rico Yan kahapon, March 29.

Ginanap ang misa sa Annunciation of Our Lord Chapel sa ABS-CBN compound. Pinangunahan ito ng dating spiritual adviser at kaibigan ni Rico na si Fr. Carmelo Caluag at dinaluhan ng pamilya at mga kaibigan ng namayapang aktor.

Kabilang sa mga dumalo sa misa ang best friend ni Rico na si Dominic Ochoa.

Matapos ang misa ay nakausap ng PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) si Dominic.

Si Rico ay natagpuang patay sa kanyang kuwarto sa Dos Palmas resort sa Puerto Princesa, Palawan noong March 29, 2002. Siya ay 27 years old lamang noon.

Si Dominic ang nakadiskubre sa bangkay ng namayapang aktor.

Ano ang masasabi ni Dominic makalipas ang sampung taon ng pagkamatay ni Rico?

“Yes, I know!" sambit muna niya.

"When I got the message from Ms. Joanna of Star Magic and my handler Allan, they are saying nga na 10thdeath anniversary na ni Rico Yan at magkakaroon ng misa para sa kanya.

“Time is really running fast. Grabe, ’no? Ten years na pala ang nakalipas!

“Solid! Solid! But again, like what I said before, he’s happier there [sabay turo sa langit].

"I’m sure he’s just around watching over us.”

Nangilid naman ang luha ni Doms nang tanungin kung ano ang nami-miss niya kay Rico.

“Alam mo, after his death, three years kong… parang ang hirap bitawan, e.

“After three years that he passed away, doon ko na-get over.

“Si Marvin [Agustin], medyo mas mabilis pa nga niyang na-get over yung pagkawala ni Rico.

"Ako, medyo mahirap, e.

“After that, hiniwalay ko na yung sarili ko.

“But what Fr. Caluag shared kanina sa Homily niya, na ’tulad niya, kapag may malaki akong problema, that I need someone to talk to…

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“Pumupunta rin ako ng Manila Memorial, ganun din ako katulad ni Father."

Sa Manila Memorial Park sa Parañaque nakahimlay ang mga labi ni Rico.

Patuloy ni Dominic, “Ngayon, wala na, good times na ngayon.

“Kanina nga, yung dinasal ko… parang yung sabi ko sa prayer ko as I talked to Rico, ‘Rics, I don’t want to talk about the past, yung nangyari sa atin... I want to talk about the present, yung good news.

“’Eto, may anak na ako at asawa.

"So, gusto ko talagang pag-usapan natin yung good times ngayon.’”

GOOD TIMES. Kung buhay pa si Rico ngayon, siguradong may bonding time pa rin sila?

“Oo, pero iba na, e, hindi mo na maibabalik yun.

“Let’s just be happy with the things na nangyari.

"I think it happened for a purpose.

“You know, everyone learned dun sa mga nangyari and I hope na natuto rin yung ibang tao.

“Not just me, but everyone learned from what happened.”

Hinahanap-hanap ba niya ang company ni Rico?

“Not anymore… before, yes!

"Yun nga yung first three years, andun yun, e.

"Pero after that, binigyan ko na ng konting gap.

“We have to move on, everyone ay kailangan namang mag-move on.”

Naniniwala ba si Dominic na walang kapalit si Rico sa industriya?

“Definitely, definitely," sagot ng aktor.

“Gaya nga ng sinabi ni Fr. Caluag kanina, parang yung standard ng ABS-CBN, siya yung hinahanap.

"For me yun, ha? I mean, I don’t want to be biased because he’s a good friend.

“He has a quality of a good person; he’s a good artist and professional actor.

“And sana good politician, too!” sabay tawa ni Dominic.

“Kaya lang iniwanan naman niya tayo, e.”

POLITICAL PLANS. Nasabi ba ni Rico sa kanya kung ano ang posisyong tatakbuhin nito kung sakaling buhay pa ang kaibigan?

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“Hindi pa naman President... Oo, pinapangarap niya yun, pero masyadong advance yung president, governor muna.”

Kung buhay si Rico, makakayanan kaya nito ang mundo ng pulitika?

“Definitely, definitely! I do the same, e. We have the same plans.

“Pero mas mababang position lang yung sa akin.

“We have the same plans, we have the same interest.

“Yun lang yung isang nakaka-miss kay Rico.

"Kasi konti lang yung kaibigan mo rito sa trabahong ito na magkakaintindihan kayo ng wavelength at interest.

“As of now, iba pa rin si Rico as a friend—yung puwede mong iiwan sa bahay.

"Di ba kasi, usually ‘pag wala ka, aalis na rin siya?

“Hindi, e. Si Rico yung kaibigan na pagdating mo, malalaman mo na lang.

“He sings with my dad and nag-inuman sila, you know what I’m saying?

“It’s really hard to find yung ganyang klaseng kaibigan… si Marvin, ganyan din.

“Yung kahit wala ka, close din sa parents mo.

“Yun yung ibig kong sabihin, yung tiwalang na-instill niya sa mga tao.”

RICO’S MOM. Nakausap din ng PEP ang ina na Rico na si Mrs. Sita Yan.

Aniya, tungkol sa yumaong anak,"After ten years, he is still part of our lives. Everything about him, I guess,

"What I cannot still not understand or get over is how much he has touched the heart of so many people, so many.

“Katulad kanina, I just came from the tomb this morning, at nakita kong ang dami ng fans dun na naglalagay ng bulaklak sa puntod ni Rico.

“Sabi ko nga, ‘Wow! It’s just a short time but he touched [the lives of] so many people!’

“And I guess, I’m, not questioning that anymore why he died, he left us but so much so much very much part of our life up to now.”

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Tinanong din namin si Mrs. Yan kung napapanaginipan niya o nagpaparamdam si Rico sa kanya.

“Hindi naman, hindi naman. Pero sometimes, mga funny dreams about him.

“It’s like… one morning, I woke up that I hold a baby, I hold him with my arms… but it’s not a lot, very few dreams lang.

“We always remember him, lalo na when we go in our house in Baguio, it’s full of Rico—his portrait, all his ads and endorsement posters are there.”

Ano ang masasabi ni Mrs. Yan tungkol sa nabanggit ni Fr. Caluag na si Rico raw ang standard ng ABS-CBN sa paghanap ng magaling na artista?

“Oh, wow! When I heard it kanina, as I said, that’s what I’m wondering this past year lang.

“Maybe kasi, I’m in the States, I was abroad for a long time.

“I talked to some people there who knows Rico, they talked about Rico, how can somebody who was in showbiz for just seven years, has just an effect in so many people… I just don’t know what is it.

“But of course, I’m very very happy, I’m very very pleased, I hope that he will always be the standard.”

Ayon kay Dominic, gusto raw palang maging Presidente ng Pilipinas si Rico. Nasabi ba ni Rico ito kay Mrs. Yan nung nabubuhay pa ito?

“Well, he didn’t tell me that, pero a lot of people will tell him that he will become a president.

“Kasi when we used to go around the country, sasabihin sa kanya ng mga tao, ‘Mr. President.’

“Sabi ko sa kanya, ‘Oh, boy!’

“But you know, we were really not discussing that, kasi he was not that mature.

“Siguro mag-congressman muna sya… siguro dahil meron siyang kakaibang karisma sa tao na hindi natin alam.”

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Kung buhay si Rico, can he become the President of the Philippines?

“Honestly, no!

"Kasi he’s a very sensitive person, hindi niya kaya ’yang dumi ng politika.

“Hindi niya kaya yun!” sabi ni Mrs. Yan.


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