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Charlie Davao dies - read details

>> Sunday, August 8, 2010

MANILA, Philippines (3rd UPDATE) - Veteran character actor Charlie Davao, father of Ricky Davao, passed away Sunday morning after a long battle with colon cancer. He was 76.

Cavite Rep. Lanie Mercado confirmed that Davao expired around 11:30 a.m. at the Philippine General Hospital. Mercado said her information came from veteran actor Tirso Cruz III.

Actress Jackie Lou Blanco, Ricky’s wife, said Davao's children, grandchildren and other relatives were at his bedside when he passed away. Ricky, however, was in Cebu, but he is now on his way back to Manila, she added.

“I arrived with my son mga 9:30 a.m. Naghihingalo na si daddy. Hirap na siyang huminga. Naka-oxygen siya," she said.

“Tanggap naman natin because we already knew. Ako, first time kong makita ever in my life na ang loved one na namatay before my eyes. That never happened to me, so iba pala siya. You accept it pero it's very painful. Siyempre lalo na sa asawa ko at anak ni daddy,” she added.

She assured that the family will announce the final funeral details as soon as they are available.

“Pinag-uusapan pa ng mga magkakapatid where the wake will be. Tapos kung kailan ang libing. We will let everybody know. I’m sure maraming colleagues si daddy na gusto siyang mapuntahan at makita. When we have the final details na I’m sure one of them will make the announcement,” she said.

According to reports, Davao's cancer was detected in December 2009.

The elder Davao recently underwent an operation. Davao’s best pal, muscleman-actor and gymnast Rusty Santos, said he was already very weak then.

Davao, the other villain

Along with Eddie Garcia, Paquito Diaz, and Vic Diaz, Davao was one of the veteran antagonists in Philippine film and television.

Born Charles Dabao in Iloilo City, he went to Manila in 1954 to pursue his college education. He was a commerce student at the University of the East while involved in commercial and print ad modeling.

Although he was attentive in school, his main goal was to engage in film acting, which he realized after a friend told him about an audition at the Sampaguita Pictures.

He didn’t miss the chance and passed the audition with flying colors.

He was introduced in “Isinumpa” in 1959.

Among his most memorable performances were in 1962 film “Kaming Mga Talyada,” where he played gay with matinee idols Juancho Gutierrez and Jose Mari Gonzales, and “Trudis Liit” with Vilma Santos. Both films were produced by Sampaguita.

But lead roles were hard to come by because he was identified with character assignments.

Davao’s biggest break came when he did “Pitong Matahari,” a James Bond-type of a film where he played Agent 009 in 1965.

Soon after, he was given action roles until he was assigned villain roles again.

His other important movies included “Palengke Queen” with Nora Aunor in 1982; “Pedro Tunasan” with Lito Lapid in 1983; “Get Victor Corpus: The Rebel Soldier’ with Rudy Fernandez in 1987; “The Rape of Virginia P.” with Alma Moreno in 1989; and “Volta” with Ai Ai de la Alas in 2004.

He also did the TV soap “Mula sa Puso” with Claudine Barretto in 1997 for ABS-CBN.

According to entertainment writer Gypsy Baldovino, Davao was married to Emma Marie, a Spanish professor at the St. Theresa’s College. They have 4 children, Bing, Ricky, Mylene and Marielle.

Mylene died in an accident when she was 5 years old. A year later, his wife also passed away.

Davao remarried to Mary Grace Iñigo. They have 2 children, Mylene and Charlon.

Being a Sampaguita former contract artist, Davao was last seen reuniting with fellow stars Susan Roces, Amalia Fuentes, Daisy Romualdez and other Dr. Jose Perez’s protégés at Fuentes’s digs in New Manila.

According to entertainment writer Chito P. Alcid, he was already emaciated then.

Alcid said Davao had courageously admitted to the group that he was ready to go anytime. –Reports from Rod Izon and Dexter Ganibe, radio dzMM, and Boy Villasanta, abs-cbnNEWS.com

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