MANILA, Philippines - Tears and smiles mingled when iconic comedian Rodolfo ''Dolphy'' Vera Quizon Sr. was laid to his final resting place at The Heritage Park in Taguig City this afternoon, July 15.
It was a brief but highly emotional send-off for the Comedy King which started with a ''Huling Misa ng Pasasalamat'' at around 11 a.m. at The Heritage chapel that was attended just by friends and family members. After the mass officiated by Fr. Tito Caluag, the family's close friends left in order to give the Quizon clan a chance to spend private time with the head of their family.
At around 2 p.m., the funeral procession began with the casket of the well-loved comedian carried out of the chapel by several man, among them Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim.
Dolphy's family, including his 17 children, as well as his closest friends all wore white, while lifetime partner, Zsa Zsa Padilla, stood out in black. They gathered at the burial site that was decorated with flowers and where a photo of the late comedian was placed in front of his casket.
Officiating priest Fr. Larry Faraon gave the final blessing and uttered a few words about and wishes for Dolphy. Faraon led the people in singing ''Ama Namin'' before Dolphy's casket was opened for final viewing.
The first to come forward and say their prayers were Dolphy's three daughters led by Mariquita. Then came Eric who said his last goodbye to his father together with actress Maricel Soriano, who played Dolphy's daughter in one of the latter's TV series.
The rest of Dolphy's children kissed their father goodbye. Actor Vandolph, the youngest and most emotional in the brood, was already crying even before he went up to the casket, guided by his older brother Rodolfo Jr. Vandolph hugged the casket tightly, crying even more.
Dolphy's lifetime partner, Zsa Zsa, walked towards the casket flanked by her daughters, Zia and Nicole. They stepped back after saying their last goodbyes and allowed Zsa Zsa to be with the Comedy King one last time.
Zsa Zsa hugged the casket with her face on the glass, crying silently for a few minutes. She then straightened up, wiped the casket and went back to her seat.
The priest, echoing what Eric earlier revealed to be the best way to honor his father, asked the people to wipe their tears and to smile to the person standing next to them. Together they said ''Masaya na kami, Dolphy, dahil na kay Lord ka na.''
After thanking the nation for its prayers and love throughout Dolphy's last days , Zsa Zsa's final message to Dolphy was: ''Mahal ka ng sambayanan. I love you, Lovey ko, till we meet again.''
Mayor Lim, a good friend to Dolphy, saluted the late actor, closed the casket and led the crowd to giving a final applause for the Comedy King.
At around 2:45 p.m., the casket was placed inside the tomb as colorful confetti's fell and white doves were released and the song ''Seasons of Love'' played.
Some of the celebrities who attended the burial were Eddie Garcia, former Ilocos Sur Congressman Ronald Singson, Gio Alvarez, Smokey Manaloto, Carmi Martin, Bibeth Orteza, Vhong Navarro, Roderick Paulate and Maybelyn dela Cruz.
With a career spanning almost 70 years, Dolphy has done over 200 films and numerous TV series. Some of his most memorable movies were ''Facifica Falayfay,'' ''Jack en Jill,'' ''Silveria,'' ''Captain Barbell,'' ''Ang Tatay Kong Nanay,'' ''Fefita Fofongay (Viuda de Falayfay),'' ''Sarhento Fofongay,'' ''A...ewan,'' and ''Markova: Comfort Gay.''