Man mistaken for dead shows up at own wake

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Thursday, October 4, 2012


A MAN whose family thought he had died in a vehicular accident last Sunday afternoon returned home to a “cold” welcome.

After watching a cockfight, 28-year-old Reynaldo Patiño stepped into his home and noticed something odd: the house was filled with bright lights and it smelled of candles burning. A large white cloth hung in one corner.

Several people who had gathered inside were frozen in shock upon seeing him.

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“My father and those present stared at me with a look of surprise,” Patiño said in Cebuano.

He had no idea his family was preparing for his wake. His mother had prepared his clothes for his burial.

“One by one they approached me and touched me. I was told 'Dong, buhi ka! Patay na man ka! (Dong, you're alive! We thought you had died!)’” he added.

The second of five children, he left home to watch a cockfight and returned home late.

Accident

He was told that his mother had identified him as a fatality of a motorcycle accident in Barangay Minulos in Barili town last Sunday afternoon.

The fatalities of the accident were pronounced dead at the Barili District Hospital.

His mother had mistakenly claimed the body of a certain “Bryan” who closely resembled him and had the same built. She did not consider his clothes when identifying the fatality.

Patiño was emotional when he related how his relatives and neighbors were relieved and confused at the same time, knowing he was all right and did not die in an accident.

The news that he was still alive did not reach all his neighbors, as fast as he wanted to.

During a bus ride, he sat alone because those who know him would not sit beside him.

“What happened to me is a lesson on the importance of family. Unsa diay usa ka tawo ang mawala sa pamilya (This is what happens when a love is lost),” he added.

Patiño said he considers this his second life and has pledged to serve his church and maybe study to become a lay minister.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 04, 2012.

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