Dan da Man
I can't say I was particularly close to Dan Campilan, the GMA TV news reporter who died in a vehicular accident last week. But I couldn't shake off the fact that this is the second reporter who wrote "30" in the span of around a month, the last being my good friend Hazel Recheta who perished in the line of duty while covering the eruption of Mt. Mayon. In fact, the last time I saw Dan was at Hazel's funeral. He was occupied with comforting another friend Cecille Lardizabal who was crying copious tears. Later outside the funeral parlor, I managed to bum a cigarette from Dan, sitting with Cecille and Mark Salazar in one corner looking forlorn with their eyes swelling from too much crying. I muttered my thanks and slunk away to smoke that much needed cig and assuage my own grief. I had seen Dan in other coverages and called him "Dan da Man" playfully. He would respond with a kind nod of the head and the killer smile. True, Dan cut a handsome figure. He also struck me as a little shy, like a school boy in a new playground. He was likeable and he took his job seriously. The profession truly needs young and dedicated reporters. Losing them so young while at the peak of their careers makes me worry a little for the profession. So Danny boy, don't worry. We'll see you later in the Great Newsroom in the sky. This time, I'll bring the smokes.