Monday, August 03, 2009

Thousands line streets for Cory

Just like Ninoy's funeral in August 1983

MANILA - An estimated crowd of 17,000 lined the whole length of Ayala Avenue in Makati City and thousands more viewed the funeral convoy of former President Corazon Aquino as she was brought to Manila Cathedral from La Salle Green Hills on Monday.

In scenes reminiscent of the 1986 People Power revolution that catapulted Aquino to the presidency, Makati employees threw confetti out of their office windows while the electronic ticker outside the Insular Life Building on Paseo de Roxas-Ayala Avenue flashed pictures of Aquino and the words "Paalam, Cory."

Footage taken by ABS-CBN's Sky Patrol showed the crowds flashing the "L" for Laban sign, which was popularized during Aquino's presidential campaign in 1986. Others clapped and cheered as Aquino's funeral convoy pulled in close near the Benigno Aquino monument on Ayala Avenue corner Paseo de Roxas.

Escorted by around 50 policemen, Aquino's funeral convoy left De La Salle Greenhills Gym in Mandaluyong City around 11 a.m. enroute to the Manila Cathedral in Intramuros Monday.

Aquino's coffin was loaded on a flatbed trailer, which was adorned with yellow and white flowers.

The presidential cortege passed through EDSA, then right on Ayala Avenue in Makati. It is expected to turn left on Buendia, then right on South Luzon Expressway. It will then turn left on President Quirino Avenue and right on Roxas Blvd., then finally right on Intramuros.

Supporters of the former president also showered the convoy with yellow confetti and released yellow balloons as it reached EDSA-Ayala Avenue.

Tarlac Bishop Florentino Sinese earlier celebrated Mass at the De La Salle Greenhills Gym before the convoy left.

In his homily, Sinese said Filipinos see in Cory "the best in each and everyone of us."

"The more we praise her, the more we reveal that we too desire to be like her. May these stories continue to be told and better still may these stories unfold forever," he said.

Sinese said critics of the former president often criticized her for always resorting to prayer in everything. "Prayer cannot be a last recourse but instead the first recourse in everything," he said.

"Certainly, Cory Aquino was not perfect but her imperfections were never an excuse not to govern and rule wisely. As we pay tribute to our beloved former president may we not only heap praises on a dead person but instead let her lfe and virtues challenge us to strive to do even better. We all dream to have a better country. She did her share. We also must do our own share," he said.

Sen. Mar Roxas, meanwhile, filed a resolution declaring January 25, the date of birth of former President Corazon Aquino, as “Cory Aquino Day.”

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