LOS ANGELES - A Filipina victim of forced labor was honored during a gala commemorating the Philippines' 121st Independence Day here.
"Maligaya. Masaya. Maraming nagmamahal sa akin (Joyful. Happy. Many people love me)," 82-year-old Nanay Fedelina told ABS-CBN News.
The Leyte-born octogenarian was rescued by authorities in 2018 after being kept like a slave by a Filipino family in the US.
Philippine Consul General Adel Cruz said Nanay Fedelina is loved by the Filipino community.
"So many people in this room love you. We will always be here to help you and support you," he said at the annual Kalayaan reception that gathered some 400 Filipinos on June 13.
Nanay Fedelina started working for the family as a house helper at 16 and was brought to the US in 1970s. She was abused and isolated from her own family.
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- Report from Steve Angeles, ABS-CBN News