Diaspora News

Gary V. in Los Angeles expressed sadness over violence in Marawi City

Mr. Pure Energy stresses a point as internet singing sensation Katrina Velarde (left) listens intently beside him during a press conference in Monterey Park shortly after they flew in at the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) Photo © Abner Galino

LOS Angeles — GARY Valenciano, aka Mr. Pure Energy, who is arguably one of the Philippine’s most enduring talent has flown into this city to visit our kababayans and where he expressed sadness after learning of the continuing violence in Marawi City.

“It is unfortunate that there are groups who would take advantage of that (the beauty of the land and its people) for their own interests,” Gary V, who has been the Philippines’ ambassador of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) since 1997, noted during a press conference in Monterey Park, an LA suburb, shortly after he and his crew landed at the Los Angeles International Airport.

“I’ve spoken to these parents, I’ve spoken to these children — face-to-face. For those of you who have only heard of Mindanao, I’ve been there many times, a beautiful and beautiful people yet tainted as it is because of what has happened there,” Gary said.

But the iconic singer/dancer/songwriter added that “whatever happened back home,” he would not let it “divert my direction into inspiring, encouraging people, giving them little hope.”

In passing, Gary V mentioned the recent bombing in Manchester in England where dozens of people were killed and hundreds were wounded.

The bomb was detonated just as people were coming out from a well-attended concert of American singer Arianna Grande at the Manchester Arena.

“Nobody would want that (Manchester tragedy) to happen. But we live in a world where anything could happen,” Gary said, adding that no one can guarantee one’s safety as he/she travel from one point to his/her house.

“But all the more I will maximize the opportunity to be there (on stage)… to plant the good seed, which hopefully in time would bring good produce,” Gary V concluded as he moved on to discuss other topics.

Gary, who began his North American tour last May 27 in a resort in Las Vegas, Nevada, will perform at Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula, California on June 3 with his daughter Kiana Valenciano (a singer and songwriter and online sensation Katrina Velarde.

On June 10, Gary, Kiana, Katrina and the hit dance crew Kinjaz will be performing at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California.


Abner Galino
The author is a poet and a writer. He was a cultural worker before he became a reporter for Tinig ng Masa and Malaya Midday Edition during the Marcos regime. He later became a reporter of People's Tonight shortly after 1986 EDSA Revolution. He went on to become its Chief of Reporters, City Editor and News Editor. He retired after 15 years in the Journal Group of Publications. He now writes for Weekend Balita and the US Asian Post (USAP), weekly Filipino-American newspapers based in Los Angeles, California.

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