INSPIRED by the generosity of “People’s Champ” Sen. Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao, Olympics-bound Eumir Felix Marcial packed relief goods and prepared to distribute these for families in key barangay (villages) in Imus, Cavite.
Marcial, who was the 30th Southeast Asian Games middleweight gold medalist in Manila last December, was supposed to start relief operations on Wednesday at Barangay Malagasang 2-B in Imus, Cavite, but heavy rains derailed the schedule.
“Wala now. Baka bukas or sa makalawa pa ‘pag nabakante, ‘pag walang ulan (None now. Maybe tomorrow or the next day if there’s an opportunity, if there’s no rain),” the 24-year-old Zamboanga City native told The Manila Times in a phone interview on Wednesday.
He said he idolizes Pacquiao’s humbleness and generosity even more than how he admires the fighting-senator’s boxing skills.
“‘Yung pagiging humble ni senator at matulingin niya, ayun ‘yung nagustuhan ko sa kanya ‒ na bukal sa puso ang pagtulong niya (His humility and helpfulness are what I liked best about the senator ‒ that his helpfulness springs from his heart),” he admitted.
“Gusto kong matulad kay Pacquiao na tumutulong. ‘Yung pagiging champion, mahirap ‘yun (I want to be like Pacquiao, who helps. About wanting to be a champion like him, that’s a harder thing to mimic),” he joked.
On Tuesday, Marcial placed canned goods, rice and other donations into bags that were good for almost 300 families.
He thanked those who helped repack and those who donated to the cause, including members of the Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines (ABAP) and its President Ricky Vargas.
“I will give this to the poorest of the poor,” said Marcial, adding that he will ask some assistance from nearby barangay centers to help him deliver the relief items.
Marcial was one of the athletes who delivered an Olympic ticket to the nation when he struck gold during the 2020 Asia-Oceania boxing Olympic qualifying tournament in Amman, Jordan last March 12.
Marcial, who is also an airman of the Philippine Air Force, hopes to fly high by landing the country’s first Olympic gold medal from the Tokyo Games set for July 23 to August 8, 2020.