Not the place to die
The sleeping quarters of the Wushu Federation of the Philippines where an 11-year-old athlete died Saturday hours after falling off the top bunk of the double-decker. More than 20 wushu athletes stay in the quarters within the training gym.
Abac Cordero
Not the place to die
Abac Cordero (The Philippine Star) - October 2, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines —  It looked like a typical dorm, around 20 square meters in size, with three bunk beds for six persons, and a window-type air-conditioner that had seen better days.

A lighted candle that was perched on a coffee cup sat on the concrete floor when reporters visited the room at noontime yesterday.

It’s one of nine rooms reserved for more than 20 athletes from the Wushu Federation Philippines (WFP), which built its training and billeting quarters on the fifth floor of the Sports Medicine building of the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex.

Last Saturday morning, an 11-year-old wushu athlete, Rastafari Daraliay, died from a freak accident, when he fell from the top bunk as he slept at around 3 a.m.

A roommate of Rastafari, a gold medalist in the recent Batang Pinoy in Baguio City, said he was awakened by a thud. The top bunk was like five feet high. But because of the thickness of the mattress, the railing that would have prevented someone from falling off was of no use.

The young Rastafari said he was okay, and went back to sleep, only to be found at around 8 a.m., unconscious, frothing in the mouth.

His roommates said they did not notice anything unusual because Rastafari, who had moved to the lower bunk after the fall, faced the wall as he slept.

Rastafari was rushed to the nearby Adventist Medical Center, where he passed away hours later.

“I was very, very sad when I heard the news,” Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman William Ramirez told reports during an emergency press conference yesterday.

“We are shocked by this untimely death of a member of the wushu family,” said WFP secretary-general Julian Camacho, adding that the federation had only allowed Rastafari to stay in the quarters on a temporary basis and upon the request of the parents.

Ramirez had visited Rastafari’s wake last Sunday, and had spoken to the victim’s parents, assuring them of any and all kind of support from the sports agency.

“It was an accident. But now we’re in a compelling position to have our facilities rehabilitated. We need to answer the call of the athletes,” said Ramirez, who had to ask the permission of Rastafari’s parents in holding the press conference.

Ramirez said the results of the autopsy should be out tomorrow.

“The autopsy will tell the whole story. Right now, we are all speaking on layman terms,” said Ramirez, who had instructed the PSC deputy executive director, Atty. Guillermo Iroy, to extend all the needed support to the victim’s family.

“We will answer all obligations,” he added.

Rastafari’s remains lie in state at the Sanctuario de Paul Cosmopolitan San Fernando Chapel in Tandang Sora Avenue, Quezon City.

RASTAFARI DARALIAY RIZAL MEMORIAL SPORTS COMPLEX WUSHU FEDERATION PHILIPPINES
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