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Jesse Robredo's first death anniversary: Leni to retrace husbands's journey from Cebu to Masbate

NAGA CITY – As part of the activities to commemorate the first death anniversary of the late Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Jesse Manalastas Robredo, his widow, Maria Lenora 'Leni' Gerona Robredo shall travel from Cebu City to Masbate, retracing the path of the tragic journey her husband took one year ago.

Mrs. Robredo, who is now the Congresswoman of the 3rd District of Camarines Sur shall take off from Cebu City on 15th of August and will visit the exact site, some 500-meters away from the Masbate City Airport at the coastal Barangay of Ibingay, where Robredo’s twine-engine Piper PA-34-200 Seneca aircraft crashed in the afternoon of August 18, 2012.

Leni Robredo told newsmen here “that she has been wanting to do the journey to thank the people of Masbate and to meet the family of the plane pilot, Jessup Bahinting, in Cebu City.”

But she admits it took her sometime to eventually muster the courage to visit these places because Jesse’s death is still too heavy an emotional load to carry within their family even a year after the accident.

According to Mrs. Robredo, the City Government of Cebu is now preparing to setup a Photo-exhibit and produce a documentary of the life and accomplishments of the late DILG Secretary. The Cebu City government shall also arrange Leni’s meeting with the family of Bahinting who died with Robredo and a Nepalese co-pilot, Kshitiz Chand, in the plane crash.

Congresswoman Robredo will also meet with Masbate City officials and local residents who helped in the recovery of the late Secretary’s remains that was extracted from a depth of over 200 feet in the sea of Masbate in the morning of August 21, 2012 after days of difficult underwater retrieval operations.

She added that Naga City Mayor John Bongat and others at the Naga City government are also preparing Naga’s tribute to its most prominent son.

The national government, meanwhile, has also promised to release Php50 Million through the National Historical Commission to pay for the building of a bronze monument and museum at the Naga City Civic Center Park to honor the late DILG Secretary. (SONNY SALES)