The dead body of a long-time vocal coach in Cebu was found at a grassy area sitio Palanas, Barangay Inayagan in the City of Naga dawn on December 30, 2023.

The body was found at around 4:30 a.m. and the one who found it reported the same immediately to authorities.

The Naga City Police would identify the body later as that of Joel Jude Suson Unchuan, known locally as Coach Jay, 46. He was a resident of Cebu City.

In a report by dySS Super Radyo, Unchuan was wearing only boxer shorts and a black t-shirt when found. Bruises were found on the victim’s stomach and his hands were tied.

Part of the police investigation is to determine whether Unchuan was strangled after strangulation marks were found in the victim’s neck.

The area where Unchuan’s body was found is uninhabited and far from houses.

As of this writing, investigation is ongoing to determine the motive of the crime and to identify the suspect.


Later in the day, the Sinulog Idol singing competition where Unchuan was a resident judge issued a statement on its Facebook page: 

"The Sinulog Idol Family is grieving as we lose one of the pillars and resident judges of Sinulog Idol.

Coach Jay Unchuan has been the panelist, mentor, and judge since the first Sinulog Idol, 15 years ago. Dubbed as the "Ultimate Vocal Coach", she has shaped and supported so many Cebuano talents. Every single Sinulog Idol owes their improvement and success to Coach Jay. And every single Sinulog Idol night, the audience members of Fuente Osmeña Circle eagerly await her sharp yet extremely meaningful comments for the participants.

More than that, Coach Jay is a beloved mother figure in the Sinulog Idol family. She has shaped all our idols to be the better version of themselves, both on and off stage. Although she was the type to always wear black, she brings with her a bright, shining light in every room she enters - with her big jewelry, fabulous hair, and warm, loving presence.

Sinulog Idol will never be the same without you, Coach Jay. Your advice, support, and love will live with us forever, and we will carry your influence throughout the future of Sinulog Idol.

We are one with the Unchuan family in seeking justice for this brutal and heartbreaking happening. We know that one day, justice will be served.

We love you Coach Jay Unchuan. Rest in Peace."

(With reports from Decemay Padilla and Guam Logroño)