Friends, family pay tribute to late Pres. Noynoy Aquino on his 63rd birthday
Family, friends, and colleagues took to social media on Wednesday to remember and pay tribute to the late President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III on his 63rd birthday.
On Instagram, TV personality Kris Aquino shared a video and a heartfelt message for her brother, apologizing “for being brat and wasting years.”
She also thanked Aquino “for everything I never thanked you for” and described him as “the best Kuya any bunso could've wished for.”
Former Vice President Leni Robredo, for her part, remembered Aquino, her party-mate at the Liberal Party, as an “exemplary public servant.”
“Remembering an exemplary public servant in prayer today. Happy Birthday, Pres Noy,” Robredo said in a Facebook post.
Meanwhile, Aquino's cousin and former senator Bam Aquino thanked the late president for being an “inspiration, his honesty, and love for his country.”
“Sa iyong ala-ala, sisiguraduhin naming hinding hindi maiiwan ang kahit sino man. Maligayang kaarawan, PNoy!” he said.
(With your memories, we'll make sure that no one will be left behind. Happy birthday, PNoy.)
Abigail Valte, Aquino’s deputy spokesperson during his administration, shared a photo of her conversation with the late president, saying that she misses his “jokes.”
“Nakakamiss yung pagbibiro. Happy (what would've been) 63rd birthday, Sir,” Valte said.
Former senator Panfilo Lacson said he also misses Aquino “who called me and every Filipino his ‘Boss.’”
Former senator Antonio Trillanes IV likewise praised Aquino for serving the country “efficiently and faithfully.”
“Bilang pangulo, hindi sya naghanap ng pagkakakitaan. Hindi sya naghangad ng RevGov o ChaCha para manatili sa pwesto. Hindi sya nang-api ng kapwa. Nanilbihan lang sya nang mahusay at tapat. Happy Birthday, Mr. President!” Trillanes said.
(As president he did not engage in corruption. He did not seek a revolutionary government or Charter chage to stay in power. He did not abuse others. He served honestly and earnestly.)
Meanwhile, family members, former Cabinet officials, and supporters of Aquino visited his tomb at the Manila Memorial Park in Sucat, Parañaque on his 63rd birthday on Wednesday.
Among those present were his sisters Ballsy Aquino-Cruz and Viel Aquino-Dee, according to a report of Super Radyo dzBB's Mao dela Cruz.
Other visitors were former Defense chief Voltaire Gazmin, former Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras, former Bureau of Internal Revenue commissioner Kim Jacinto-Henares, former presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda, former Manila International Airport Authority general manager Jose Angel Conrado, and former Interior and Local Government secretary Mar Roxas.
A Mass was held at Aquino's grave at 10 a.m. and an online Mass presided by Rev. Fr. Jett Villarin, SJ.
During his homily, Villarin said he was thankful that Aquino embodied humility as he witnessed it personally.
“Humility doesn’t come easy to those with wealth and power. We are grateful to God that money and power did not get to Noynoy. I am a personal witness to this gift of God to him,” Villarin said.
Aquino, the son of slain senator Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino Jr. and the late President Corazon Aquino, died due to renal disease secondary to diabetes on June 24, 2021.
His administration was known for its “Daang Matuwid” tagline, an advocacy for good governance. The “No Wang-Wang” order was one of the first policies that he implemented after assuming the country’s top post in June 2010. —Richa Noriega and Joviland Rita/KBK, GMA Integrated News