Thursday, February 26, 2009

Prayers for Amiel Alcantara

I couldn't sleep last night.

Julian Carlo Miguel 'Amiel' Alcantara was a ten year old student in the fourth grade at the Ateneo de Manila grade school. On Tuesday, as he was crossing the street to get to his car, he was bit by a van and crushed between two cars. The impact was so strong that the can further collided with three vehicles before coming to a stop. Little Amiel was hit and run over, his head pinned beneath the wheel. His 65 year old nanny also suffered serious injuries. She tried to push the boy away from the careening car but they were too far from each other. The really heartbreaking part was that it was his 13 year old brother and his driver who had to extricate his body from underneath the car. He was rushed to the hospital, but died in his brother's arms an hour after the accident.

Read the full story here and here.

I am really shocked and distraught. Reports are saying that the driver of the van, herself a mother, might have stepped on the wrong pedal. I can't help but feel for her, too, since it is her children who will undoubtedly carry the shame of having a mother for a killer for the rest of their lives, accident or not. And pray, pray, pray for Amiel's family, that they will have the strength to bear this cross.

According to a statement from his father, Amiel Alcantara was a very studious son, who liked to swim (he had apparently swam in the lake in Taal Volcano)and was a member of the Boy Scouts. Let us pray that such a senseless tragedy may never happen again. What a sad, sad event.


Ryan Ericson Canlas said...

I came from UP and not from Ateneo and I am a father as well but my son is not an ATENISTA but from Lourdes School of Mandaluyong. I write because what had happened to AMIEL was something that made me realizes a lot of things not just about the incident but about FATHERHOOD.

The story focuses on AMIEL's FATHER as well as a FATHER & SON school activity has been nearing. We as fathers may not at all be so showy and emotional to our sons because of being pre-occupied with our roles as providers and heads of our families but then this has made me re-think that our focus no matter what should always be with our kids - with our family.

Each day counts. I often would kiss my son and tell him how I love him being the only child. I could just imagine how painful it is for AMIEL's FATHER to have bid farewell to his son after breakfast as a normal daily routine without expecting that moment was their last. I cried while driving home.

I must have heard the news late but I cannot stop thinking about it. Imagine a school so expensive where you expect that traffic enforcers are regulating the flow of vehicles because kids from known and from ordinary families are around the place which they have to protect, but then there is none.

I have not heard in any of the news article about the school having its own ambulance or experienced in-house medics attending to the need of the child. It was the lady whom we all do not know who volunteered to help the child and the driver to take them to the hospital.

Worse is that as mentioned, no one even wanted to open their doors for the driver who was walking and carrying the bloodied child for help. It is sad. Imagine how people can be heroes in the split of a second and how some chooses to be numb and careless. Why? Is it because they do not want to stain their nice car's interiors? Too bad.

I do not intend to blame or raise issues here. The point here is that all we all as parents are responsible for our kids. More so, as drivers, we too are responsible to ensure that we maintain safety and caution. Now, we can never revert things back. We need to move forward and learn from this. AMIEL's life has a good purpose indeed and that is to awaken us all about safety, care, time and love for our kids.

As I reached home, I asked for my son. He was playing hide and seek with me as usual. I search all the possible hiding places until I found him. I never asked him about his school works or about what news on BANDILA as he is fond of watching news. No words were said... I just hugged my son so tight and kissed him so many times as tears fall.

I love my son and I would not want such thing to happen to him even when he is already old and on his own. Thus, as I write this, I am writing to the officials of Lourdes School of Mandaluyong as well to improve pedestrian safety and proper parking regulations and perhaps put PEDESTRIAN LANES and MARKINGS along SHAW BLVD. and in front of CITYLAND SHAW TOWER to ensure safety.

Thank you AMIEL for waking us up. You will forever be remembered in our hearts.

SAP Practice Manager - SAP COE
International SAP BASIS Consultant

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