7-year-old survivor looks for dead mother-A A +A
Saturday, October 26, 2013
SAN ISIDRO, Bohol -- Merry Rose Potane’s mother Rosemie always told her not to sleep too close to her newborn brother Cyrell Jayvee.
“Mahadlok iyang mama masakitan ang bata (Her mother was afraid she would hurt the baby),” said Renante Barbarona, Merry Rose’s uncle and Rosemie’s brother.
That all changed last Oct. 15.
The seven-year-old Merry Rose lost her mother, brother and aunts Renalyn and Rovelyn Barbarona when a boulder rolled down from the mountain and crushed their house in Barangay Abehilan following the 7.2 magnitude earthquake the struck Bohol and the neighboring island of Cebu.
Merry Rose was the lone survivor. Cyrell Jayvee, who was still 15 days old, was pinned down along with Rosemie, 27; Renalyn, 18; and Rovelyn, 12.
Her father Rodel, who was not home when the earthquake struck, said that his daughter has been asking for her mother’s whereabouts.
Renante said his grandmother Dionisia Barbarona, 88, was also killed when a portion of the wall of her house fell on her.
The Potanes and Barbaronas were among the reported casualties in San Isidro. They were buried yesterday afternoon.
Before the earthquake, Renante said he left their house early because he had to go to Tagbilaran City.
Rosemie, Renalyn, Rovelyn and Merry Rose were apparently eating breakfast. Cyrell Jayvee was sleeping in a hammock inside the room near the kitchen.
Merry Rose told Renante that when the ground shook, her mother told to hide under the table.
She and her two sisters ran into the room to get Cyrell Jayvee. It was too late. The boulder had already crushed him.
Merry Rose told her uncle she ran outside and shouted for help.
The bodies of her relatives weren’t retrieved until later in the afternoon.
When the shaking subsided, Renante said he immediately sent a text message to Renalyn, asking her if they were all okay.
“Nahibung ko di na siya mo-reply (I wondered why she wouldn’t reply),” he said.
Sensing there was something wrong, he went home past 10 a.m.
When he arrived, he saw neighbors and a rescue team digging underneath a boulder where their house used to stand. He joined them.
Renalyn and Dionisia were rushed to the hospital because they were still breathing, but they did not make it there alive.
Renante said it is hard to accept the death of his family members.
“Di kapasanginlan ang Ginoo kay kinaiyahan man ni (You can’t blame God for what Mother Nature has wrought),” he said.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 26, 2013.