ILIGAN CITY -- Prior to a life as a fiery radio commentator, Fernando “Nanding” Solijon escaped death three times.
According to his brother Jerriel, who spoke before necrological rites at the Public Plaza Monday evening, Nanding first came face to face with death while he was around 12 years old in the hinterlands of Manticao, Misamis Oriental where the Solijon brood was raised by farmer-parents.
Nanding accidentally stepped into a cut tree that slid and raced him down a hill. He was lucky to hide behind a large stump, hence avoided a direct hit.
Years later, Jerriel recalled, Nanding was swept by onrushing floodwaters in a river. His family thought he drowned, only to find out when the flood subsided that Nanding clung to the roots of a large tree that grew along the banks.
In his senior year in high school, Nanding was suspected as a communist rebel and mauled by soldiers. His family found him bloodied and unconscious after the physical assault. “He was very lucky to have survived,” narrated Jerriel.
Fate caught up on the 48-year-old Nanding evening of August 30 through eight gunshots.
On Tuesday, more than 500 mostly ordinary people brought him to his final resting place at the St. Michael Cemetery here.