MANILA, Philippine – The 19-year-old student who was raped and killed at the University of the Philippines-Los Baños (UPLB) campus was laid to rest in her hometown of Rizal on Tuesday.
Friends, schoolmates and relatives of Given Grace Cebanico, most of whom were dressed in white, marched from a community chapel to Santo Rosario Memorial Park in Binangonan Rizal.
A close friend of the victim said Cebanico once mentioned to her that she would like attendees of her funeral to dress in white.
Cebanico’s best friend and roommate Naryne Amansec said Cebanico will be sorely missed.
"Wala na akong maiiyakan, mapagsasabihan ng problema at wala ng magsasabing ‘Hello guys’,” said Amansec.
Members of Life in Christ and His Word ministries also took part in the march. Cebanico was the group’s song leader.
Before the march, a video presentation of Cebanico was shown to her loved ones.
Cebanico’s father struggled to keep his composure when he saw a picture of his family during happier times.
He expressed his gratitude to those who showed their support in this difficult time. He also hoped that crimes near the campus of UPLB will be stopped.
At the cemetery, hundreds attended the funeral to show sympathy and support for Cebanico’s family.
The body of Cebanico, a UPLB Computer Science student, was found dead last week dumped in a canal in Barangay Putho-Tuntungin.
Cebanico was on her way to her dormitory when she was abducted by security guard Lester Rivera and tricycle driver Percival de Guzman.
Cebanico’s hands were tied behind her back and masking tape covered her mouth when she was found. She also had a bullet wound on her forehead.
Police confirmed that the victim was raped before she was killed.
Police consider the abduction, rape and murder of Cebanico as a closed case following the arrest of the 2 suspects behind the crime.
Both Rivera and de Guzman are in police custody and are facing charges of homicide with rape. -- Report from Sol Aragones, ABS-CBN News