‘Boy didn’t see light of day’

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Thursday, February 13, 2014


IT could have been ten-year-old Diether Caracol’s chance at having a better eyesight.

The grade two pupil of Barangay Calumpang, Oslob town was scheduled for a medical checkup yesterday for his eye problem.

Diether, however, didn’t make it to his appointment after the Isuzu L300 van he took figured in an accident in Barangay Talaga, Argao.

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He died of severe head injuries. Two other female passengers were also killed.
His mother Arieta, 42, and siblings Luis, 31, and Aliosa, 14, were wounded.

Their mother accompanied them in their trip to a private hospital in Cebu City. Luis and Aliosa have the same eye problem with Diether.

His aunt Corazon, 33, said the victims were recipients of a project initiated by Norfil Foundation Inc., a non-profit social welfare organization that aims to help persons with disabilities (PWDs).

The family woke up early yesterday and was picked up by the van past 4 a.m. It was suppose to be their first checkup, Corazon said.

“Magpiratpirat ilang mga mata sige (Their eyes would blink uncontrollably),” she told Sun.Star Cebu.

Despite their eye problem, Diether continued his studies.

He had seven siblings and his parents survive through fishing.

“Mao siguro nadaot ang mata ana kay mokuyog man na sa papa ug pangisda inig kadlawon (His eyes were probably damaged because he used to go fishing with his father at dawn),” Corazon added.

She learned the incident from Arieta, who called her up yesterday to tell her what happened without knowing Diether died.

Corazon was shocked to see the remains of Diether covered with sheets in the premises of Isidro Kintanar Memorial Hospital.

“Mura ra og natu’g ang bata intawon (It looked like he was just sleeping),” she said.

Meanwhile, one of the casualties, 42-year-old Rosalinda Laurente, was only accompanying the child of her neighbor yesterday.

The child’s mother was reportedly in Manila.

“Dagang guwang man ni siya. Hilig ra motabangtabang,” said her relative Ruby Aberion, 44.

Meanwhile, a staffer from the Department of Social Welfare and Development in Oslob confirmed that Norfil Foundation coordinated with them to help PWD’s in the town.

She refused to give more details and said that their social worker was not around in the office.

Provincial Social Welfare and Development officer Evelyn Senajon said Norfil Foundation is a non-government organization that has a project for adults and children PWD’s.

The foundation’s Facebook account says it is a non-profit, non-government social welfare organization registered in the Securities and Exchange Commission and accredited by the DSWD.

Senajon said Norfil Foundation covers selected local government units in the northern and southern part of Cebu.

Senajon explained that Oslob and Argao are just two of the LGU’s covered by Norfil.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on February 14, 2014.

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