Docs, lawyers mourn deaths-A A +A
Wednesday, January 23, 2013
THE medical and legal communities in Cebu are shocked by the death of Dr. Reynold Rafols and his lawyer Jubian Achas.
Rafols and Achas were shot by Canadian John Pope inside the Municipal Trial Court in Cities (MTCC) Branch 6 yesterday morning. Shortly after, Pope shot in the nape Assistant City Prosecutor Ma. Theresa Calibugan-Casiño outside MTCC Branch 1.
Dr. Ruben Escarda, president of the Cebu Medical Society (CMS), said Rafols was known in the field of pediatric surgery, having practiced his profession for about 20 years.
The Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC), in a press statement, said the death of Rafols, its pediatric surgery section head since 1995, is a loss to the hospital.
“His contribution in the service and in the training programs of residency will be remembered by those to whom his wisdom has been unselfishly passed,” read the VSMMC statement.
Achas’ death also shook the legal profession.
Achas, a volunteer of the Cebu-Citizens’ Involvement and Maturation in People’s Empowerment and Liberation, was known to be soft-spoken and straightforward.
“I was shocked when I heard the news,” said lawyer Alex Monteclar, former dean of the University of San Carlos college of law. “When he was with the legal aid, dili siya maldito. He was not the kind na mapusilan (He was not sly. He was not the type who would get shot at).”
Achas, a native of Lagonglong, Misamis Oriental, became a lawyer on March 14, 1994. He worked with Monteclar under the Integrated Bar of the Philippines’ legal aid program.
As of press time yesterday, Pope’s third victim, Fiscal Casiño, was in critical condition at the Chong Hua Hospital.
Casiño has two small children with lawyer Rhett Casiño, labor and employment officer III of the Department of Labor and Employment (Dole) 7.
Dole 7 Director Gloria Tango said Rhett was in the office when he heard what happened to his wife and rushed to the hospital.
“They have two kids, a boy and a girl, who are both below five years old. Fiscal Casiño is from Leyte while Rhett is from Cagayan de Oro City,” she said.
Escarda said doctors are careful with foreigners and some even refuse to take them in as patients.
He said the sentiment arose from an incident where a foreign patient shot a physician. He did not give details on the incident, though.
Statements of sympathy for the Rafols family were posted on the R2M Lifeline Wellness page in Facebook, which featured an article about Dr. Elaine Pesons-Rafols, wife of Reynold.
The Rafols have two daughters.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 23, 2013.