Marcelino Entia, an ice cream vendor, thought he was just dreaming.
Entia didn’t expect, even in his wildest dream, to meet personally his boxing idol, Manny Pacquiao.
Pacquiao had just finished attending a church service and was about to go home when the ice cream vendor passed by.
One of Pacquiao’s security escorts called up Entia to buy an ice cream. A delectable ice cream stick is perfect for a snack during that hot Sunday noon.
It all started from a casual conversation — a humble senator, munching an ice cream stick by the roadside under the shade of a huge tree, talking and listening to the story of an ice cream vendor.
Pacquiao, at first, paid Entia P3,000 for the ice cream consumed by the pack.
But upon learning that Entia was a stroke victim and has three children, the senator from Mindanao instead gave him P30,000.
Entia’s eyes puffed up. He couldn’t believe what was happening. It was first time in his life to receive such a big amount in cash.
Pacquiao further found out that Entia’s family was just renting a house and his three children have not yet been enrolled due to lack of money.
The boxer-lawmaker pledged to give the ice cream vendor a free house and lot and a scholarship for his three children.
A teary-eyed Entia said in vernacular “Sen. Manny Pacquiao is a blessing to poor Filipinos. He is blessed by God because he has a good heart.”
More than a thousand homeless families had been beneficiaries of Pacquiao’s free housing project in Sarangani and General Santos City.
“Providing shelter and free education to poor families would help them overcome poverty. I hope, other affluent Filipinos would learn to share their blessings to the poor,” Pacquiao said.
The Filipino boxing hero started from scratch but managed to conquer poverty due to prayer, hard work and discipline.
“I will never forget where I came from. I feel, God has blessed me so I can also be a blessing to others,” Pacquiao said. (MRO-O/S Pacquiao)