Paolo Valenciano and Samantha Godinez kiss as husband and wife -- Garlic Garcia’s Twitter account
MANILA -- An emotional Gary Valenciano expressed pride of his eldest child, Paolo, who married his long-time girlfriend on Thursday.
At the sidelines of the wedding ceremony held at the Manila Polo Club, the 48-year-old performer was overjoyed at the latest milestone in his son's life. After six years of being a couple, Paolo married his girlfriend Samantha Godinez on Thursday afternoon.
"Blessed ako. Talagang niyakap ko si Samantha (Godinez) kanina. Sabi ko, 'Thank you for being part of Paolo's life. You don't know how much you've touched me, how much that means to me. I'm very fortunate na my son made a good choice,'" Gary said.
The veteran singer credited Godinez for encouraging Paolo to be more of himself -- "childlike and boyish" -- even in public.
"That's Paolo. That's really him, and I'm glad that he just came out kanina. She was able to bring that out in him, and make him live that and be himself," Gary said.
The older Valenciano, however, turned sentimental when it came to the subject of both his sons living apart from him and his wife Angeli in the near future. Gary's second son, Gab, is set to leave for Florida in the United States to pursue a career in the music industry.
"I've been holding it all in. As a matter of fact, in the next two days I might just drive out maybe to Tagaytay, just on my own... There are certain things I have to digest and learn to live with for now," he said.
Nevertheless, Gary expressed excitement with welcoming a new member of the family -- his first grandchild.
"Yeah, bring it on! My legs, kaya ko pang mag-swimming with my apo. I don't mind. Kung ano 'yung mga pagkukulang ko kay Paolo, and if Paolo doesn't have time with his baby, come on, bring him to papi! I will take care of him," he said.
Asked for his message to his son, Gary assured Paolo and his wife of his unfailing presence in their life.
"Not just as the weeks, the months go by, but as the years go by, for as long as this heart beats, I'm going to be the father and the father-in-law to the both of them," he said.
Addressing Paolo, Gary added: "When you said a lot of people are concerned about the wedding, but you're more concerned about the marriage -- that says so much about who you are, Pao."
"You anchored your relationship on Christ. Know that he is the captain of that ship that has you and Samantha and the kids to come. God bless you both. I love you dearly. Need me, and I'll be there, promise," he said.