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Another devotee dies during Nazarene feast

Another devotee died in this year's Feast of the Black Nazarene just as the image was being returned to Quiapo Church via the Traslacion before dawn Saturday.

The devotee, who was not immediately identified, was allegedly pinned in the crowd, radio dzBB's Mao dela Cruz reported early Saturday.

He was declared dead on arrival at the Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center, the dzBB report quoted SPO4 Glenn Vallejo of the Manila Police District as saying.

Red Cross volunteers had rushed the devotee to the hospital before 4 a.m.

The devotee was described as 25 to 30 years old, and wearing a maroon shirt and denim pants.

During the first few moments of the Traslacion, a member of the Hijos de Nazareno, Renato Gorion, lost consciousness and died.

Meanwhile, the Manila city government estimated that 12 million devotees participated in this year's Feast of the Black Nazarene, GMA 7 news program “24-Oras” reported Saturday.
The Philippine Red Cross, for its part, deployed 550 personnel and recorded around a thousand minor injuries, plus the two fatalities.
According to PRC Secretary General Gwendolyn Pang, the number of injured was mainly due to the rerouting of the procession through narrower streets following a fire erupting on the Escolta route.
“Last year wala tayong [fatalities]. This year meron tayong dalawa. And last year ang dami ng mga patients served ng Philippine Red Cross ay nasa 1,010. This year 1,709. Medyo malaki yung mga minor cases,” Pang said.

Generally peaceful

But the Metro Manila police said this year's feast was generally peaceful.

"Ang general assessment, peaceful ang kahapon. Siyempre may reported injured at namatay. Ang pag-deploy ng personnel at ang panahon makulimlim, 'di masyadong mainit," Metro Manila police chief Director Carmelo Valmoria said on dzBB radio. — Joel Locsin/Andrei Medina/LBG, GMA News