To Manay Ichuâs Dabarkads with love; doctor loses way and finds God
The Maceda sons Manny, Ernest, Erwin, Macky and Edward during the last day of the wake for their mom, Marichu ‘Manay Ichu’ Maceda, to whom they dedicated the songs Hindi Kita Malilimutan and Saan Ka Man Naroroon
To Manay Ichu’s Dabarkads with love; doctor loses way and finds God
FUNFARE - Ricky Lo (The Philippine Star) - September 26, 2020 - 12:00am

Feel good Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020. Time out from showbiz and time in for inspiring stories.

Love letter from Manay Ichu’s siblings and children to the Dabarkads

You filled Mama’s days with so much love and laughter. She looked forward to spending time with you and her calendar was filled with your trips, lunches and get-togethers! But “spending time” is a misnomer because time passed too quickly when you were all together.

She had stories galore to share but often could not get through them because she forgot the details or could not stop laughing. All we know is that each trip, each outing, was better than the last, and the best was yet to come. The joy you brought her was why she did not want to miss a single opportunity to be with you.

She spoke of her tireless mothering, her generosity and thoughtfulness at picking out the treats and gifts she knew each of you would personally enjoy. The dabarkads was her circle, but you were never just a group to her. She loved you all fiercely as individuals and treasured each personal encounter in the midst of the group gatherings. We thank you all for loving her so greatly in return and for filling her days, especially the last one with so much love and kindness.

and (back row, third from left) during one of the regular get-togethers of her well-loved Dabarkads led by Susan Roces and daughter Sen. Grace Poe, Helen Gamboa, Antonio ‘Mr. T’ Tuviera, Danny Dolor and Mother Lily. Special guest at the event was Senate Pres. Tito Sotto (standing, fourth from right).

She built so many wonderful memories with you, so much to sustain her when things got challenging. With you, she enjoyed sightseeing and good food, heart-warming stories and personal encounters, the heights of comedy and depths of drama in the industry and in personal lives. But through these and within these, always the deep abiding blessing of your friendship, so close that she considered you family.

May we, too, be graced with such great friends to love and to love us.

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for loving Mom, for loving and being with us these last few days and for sharing your memories of her with us.

— Manny, Ernest, Erwin , Macky, Edward

Manay Ichu (left) with sisters Gina, Lilibeth and Chona, and brother Cocoy.

Doctor loses his way and finds God

The following story was forwarded to Funfare by Cris Belen who, like my other friend contributors, got it from her friend who got it from a friend, so on and so forth. Cris didn’t mention a title to the story so I decided to make one.

Dr. Abraham, a well-known cancer specialist, was once on his way to an important conference in another city where he was going to receive an award in the field of medical research.

He was excited about the award and so he boarded a plane to the venue. However, two hours after the plane took off, it made an emergency landing at the nearest airport due to a technical problem.

Afraid that he would not make it in time to the conference, he immediately went to the reception to make inquiries. He found out that he would have to wait 10 hours for the next flight to his destination! He rented a car and drove himself to the conference city which was four hours away.

Soon after he left, the weather changed and a heavy storm began. The downpour made it difficult for him to see so he missed a turn he was supposed to take.

Driving in the heavy rain on a deserted road, feeling hungry and tired, he frantically began to look for any sign of civilization. He came across a small tattered house and knocked on the door. A beautiful lady opened the door. He explained his situation and wanted to use the lady’s telephone but she had no telephone. She, however, asked him to come inside and wait till the weather improved. The doctor, who was hungry and exhausted, accepted the offer. The lady offered him something to eat and drink.

She asked him to join her in prayers but he declined. According to him, he believed in hard work, not in prayers. Sitting at the table and sipping his tea, the doctor watched the woman pray many times beside a baby’s crib. Feeling that the woman might be in need of help, the doctor asked her what exactly she needed from God and asked if God ever listened to her prayers.

When he inquired of the child in the crib, the woman explained that her son was down with cancer. And they had been advised to see a doctor named Abraham who could cure him but she did not have enough money to afford his fees.

She said that God had not yet answered her prayers but said that God would create some way out one day. She added that she would not allow her fears to overcome her faith.

Stunned and speechless, Dr. Abraham began to weep. He was forced to say out loud, “God is great!” and recollected to the woman the sequence of bad events — malfunction on the plane, a thunderstorm and how he lost his way. All of which had happened because God answers prayers, wanted to give him a chance to come out of his bondage of materialistic career pursuit and give some time to a poor, helpless woman who had nothing but rich prayers.

Oh! What a God!

(Footnote from Cris: God may not answer our prayers our way but He will always answer His way. “Behind the scenes, God will move men, the weather, events, circumstances, etc. in order to work out the best for us!” Do not stop trusting. Do not stop hoping. Hold on! Hold out! Look up daily! This story touched me. I hope it touches you, too, and if it does, please share.).

(E-mail reactions at For more updates, photos and videos, visit or follow me on Instagram @therealrickylo.)

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