MANILA, Philippines -- Dolphy's final resting place is certainly befitting of a man dubbed the country’s “King of Comedy.”
As the nation mourned Dolphy's passing, many of his followers also took notice of his casket as it finally emerged from the hearse that brought his remains to his "second home" on Wednesday.
A day after he finally succumbed to an ailing health condition on Tuesday, Dolphy’s remains were brought from his private residence in Marina Bay Homes in Parañaque to the ABS-CBN compound in Quezon City, where a requiem mass and tribute program were held in his memory.
His casket, met by his colleagues at the entrance to ABS-CBN’s main lobby, shined gold. But its sheen, the coffin’s agent clarified, comes from it being made of solid bronze.
“It’s actually a solid bronze metal casket, and siya lang talaga ang mayroong ganyan,” said Febie Angelie Vera, a supervisor at the Loyola Memorial Chapels, where the casket was bought in the 1970s.
Made for a King
The bronze casket bore the precise design chosen by the comedy king himself, according to Fanny Cartagena, also a supervisor at the Loyola Memorial Chapels.
“Nag-iisa lang ‘yan para kay Dolphy,” Cartagena said.
Since Dolphy purchased the casket four decades ago, it had been stored for safekeeping at the Loyola Memorial Chapels and Crematorium, where it was covered with flour to preserve its condition.
“Nung pinuntahan namin siya [casket] ni Eric [Quizon], para siyang espasol. Sabi ko, ‘Ba’t ganyan?’ ‘Ay hindi, sir, lilinisin po ‘yan.’ ‘Ah, ganoon ba?’” recalled Dolphy’s son Epi Quizon.
Today, a casket bearing the same features of Dolphy’s – stainless, air-tight, and made of bronze -- would cost around P1.8 million, according to Vera and Cartagena.
“Sobrang ganda, ‘di ba? Iniisip ko naman, kung bibilhan mo ng kotse, o pasasakayin mo sa Mercedes, mas sasakay siya sa 1970’s na Mercedes, kaysa sa 2012 eh,” Epi said, explaining Dolphy’s taste for vintage items, which translated to his choice of casket.
With his family’s announcement of a private burial for the film icon on Sunday, Dolphy’s final resting place serves as a reflection of the majesty of his achivements throughout his 65-year career in show business. – with a report from Mario Dumaual, ABS-CBN News