Olympian Tom Ong passes away
(The Philippine Star) - December 15, 2016 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines – Mariano “Tom” Ong, a steady shooter who represented the Philippines twice in the Olympics, passed away yesterday due to cardiac arrest. He was 78.

His son, multi-titled shooter Nathaniel “Tac” Padilla, said the veteran of the 1972 Munich and 1976 Montreal Olympics just underwent a two-hour dialysis when he suffered cardiac arrest.

Padilla, who was only 12 years old when he won the gold medal in the 1976 World Junior Shooting Championships in Mexico, said doctors had tried to revive Ong but failed.

“We were in the hospital for his dialysis. But after the procedure he went into cardiac arrest. Doctors tried to revive him pero wala na (but he was gone),” Padilla told The STAR.

Among Ong’s teammates in the Olympics in 1972 and 1976 was Arturo Macapagal, who passed away in August last year.

Macapagal is the half-brother of former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, and once headed the Philippine National Shooting Association (PNSA).

Ong ran the family-owned Spring Cooking Oil until his son took over the company’s operations a few years ago.

“He was diabetic and later on his kidneys suffered, too,” said Padilla, adding the past six months, his father had gone “in and out” of the hospital.

Ong was 32 years old when he competed in the mixed rapid-fire pistol (25 meters) event of the Munich Olympics, and returned to compete in the Montreal Olympics.

The Malabon native’s 1972 stint was historic since it was in Munich where the Phl sent its biggest delegation in the history of the quadrennial games after fielding in 53 athletes – 48 men and five women.

Ong was also part of the eight-man team in shooting, the second most by a Phl team in Munich next only to the 12-man basketball squad skippered by Jimmy Mariano.

He made his way back to the Games four years later in Montreal along with 13 others, including another shooter Macapagal.

Ong’s remains lie in state at the Arlington Chapel along Araneta Avenue in Quezon City. Interment will be announced later.

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