MANILA – Dani Barretto revealed the last time she saw her father, actor Kier Legaspi, was seven years ago.
She mentioned this in an interview with Vicki Belo for the celebrity doctor’s vlog.
Saying Legaspi wasn’t a big presence in her life growing up, Barretto said: “I knew of him. He would come and go in my life for 27 years but not like a constant figure. But I always knew who he was. I knew he was my dad.”
Barretto also said her father was not the type who was always present during special occasions.
“I don’t think I ever celebrated a birthday with my dad. Growing up, that was actually a major frustration for me. Kasi siyempre, when you have friends, you see them at birthday parties, tapos may cake blowing, tapos complete family kapag may birthday. I didn't have that growing up,” she said.
When asked if this hurt her, Barretto said: “Yeah, of course, it did because I knew he was just around. I knew hindi naman siya OFW. He's just within my reach. But when I got older and I had more freedom na to reach out to him and see him. I did, I tried.”
Nonetheless, Barretto stressed they also had a relationship and she in fact lived with him for a short while when she was 19.
“It was a very dark phase in my life. At that time, I wanted to get to know him. I wanted a different point of view. I’ve lived with my mom all my life. Parang I wanted naman to try to know my dad, so I lived with him for three months. We had fun. Doon ko nakilala dad ko. We had a relationship. I have great memories of him. But naudlot siya eh,” she said.
After that three months of living with her dad, Barretto said they had a falling out, following a fight.
“A fight occurred one night and hindi na namin na-resurrect from that night. We just stopped talking after that night. And then it has been seven years,” she said.
Despite this, Barretto said she reached out to her father last year because she wanted her daughter to have a grandfather.
“I spoke to him last year. I called him [to tell him about] a lot of things. Parang because I also had a baby. I was very emotional because I knew he was just there. I want my daughter to know him. I don't want my daughter to grow up na what if she asks me about my dad, wala ako masagot because I don't know what's happening in his life,” she said.
Unfortunately, they never got the chance to get together because of the ongoing pandemic.
“I didn't even have his number. I had to ask for his number sa lola ko, his mom. I called him and we spoke. We kept trying to plan to see each other but because of COVID hindi kami matuluy-tuloy,” she said.
After Barretto’s interview with Belo, Legaspi coincidentally shared a cryptic post on social media that left his followers wondering if this was his reaction to his daughter’s revelations.
"Magpa-interview kaya ako para ‘yung side ko naman ang marinig. I’m trying to take all the punches and lies but let’s see how you would feel if I tell my side of the story. Game?" he wrote.
Before Barretto got married last year, Legaspi took to social media to congratulate his daughter on her engagement and to express how much he loves her.
“Dear Aynrand Danielle, first things first, congratulations, I heard you are getting married. May both of you live a blissful marriage with plenty of children,” he began.
“I don't really say much about our relationship because I am certain that both of us know the truth. I believe that no matter what you say now can never change the truth and the memories we had,” he added.
Assuring his daughter that he will always just be there for her, Legaspi said: “Bata ka pa lang lagi na kitang hinahabol, you don't know what I had to do just to see you. Until now, I'm still waiting for our meeting.”
Legaspi then reminded Barretto that he was the first man who ever loved her and that no matter what, she will always be his daughter.
“I will continue to pray for you and your family. Hindi importante ang opinyon ng iba. Para sa akin, kasama ang Legaspi family you will have a special place in our hearts. I wish nothing but the best for you. May God bless you and everyone you love,” he ended.
Barretto is the only child of Legaspi and Marjorie Barretto.