‘I cannot find the words’: Frankie Pangilinan shares little-known side of PNoy in tribute


Posted at Jun 25 2021 03:51 PM | Updated as of Jun 25 2021 05:48 PM

MANILA — Singer Frankie Pangilinan paid tribute on Thursday to the late former President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, sharing her views of him as the country’s chief executive, as well as a personal friend with whom she shared a common passion for music.


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On Instagram, Pangilinan shared a photo of her as a child interacting with President Aquino, who appears to be explaining the Philippine map sown on his shirt.

“I always had too many questions. Thankfully, he likewise had far too much kindness and solemn grace. He’d indulge me and my (surely) frivolous thoughts without ever making me feel like they were invaluable or unimportant. I knew him enough to notice he was often sad of eye,” she wrote.

Pangilinan is the daughter of Sen. Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan, a political ally of President Aquino, and music icon Sharon Cuneta.

“Growing up -- learning and reading about his work instead of just viewing it from the sidelines -- led to far bigger (and at times, frustrated) questions, but fewer opportunities to ask them,” Pangilinan said.

“Today, we do not grieve for presumed perfection. We grieve for a man whose integrity enabled him to recognize his own imperfections and from there, try his best. He did not shy away from criticism because he understood its value. And he was humble. So so so humble.”

Beyond her firsthand exchanges with President Aquino as the country’s top official, Pangilinan also spoke of their friendship and bonding over music.

She recalled that President Aquino would lend her vinyl records, and introduced her to many artists, notably David Bowie.

“On a very personal note, thank you for being so generous with your time. Thank you for the vinyls, for single-handedly encouraging my love for Bowie. Thank you for the Ziggy Stardust. And the Carly Simon. And the Elton John. And for the spare Coca-Cola (dapat classic Coke kasi, eh puro diet at zero lang iniinom ni mama hahaha kaya sa kanya na lahat ng classic) we kept in the fridge,” Pangilinan wrote.

“I cannot find the words. I am just achingly sorry that several, big-girl questions went unasked. God bless your family, and you, Mr. President,” she said.