Quantcast
Latest Stories

The chosen one

By

LUCKY kid Ronan after the Witness History tour PHOTOS FROM RUTH PADRIGA’S INSTAGRAM ACCOUNT

Ten-year-old Ronan Raphael Padriga wanted to wear his LeBron James jersey to the Witness History Tour but couldn’t. He had worn it just two days before, in an exhibition game.

“I need to wear red or black, Mom, Miami Heat colors,” he told his mother Ruth Padriga, head writer for the ABS-CBN show “Showtime.” She dug around their attic and found a red shirt for him.

It was almost a miracle that Ronan would be able to see LeBron James live. When he first heard that the NBA superstar was coming, he asked his mom if they could watch him. When they found out that the only way to get tickets was to line up at Nike Park in Bonifacio Global City, their family driver offered to do it.

He took the day off, lined up as early as five in the morning and kept Ronan’s mom updated. “At one point, he said, sure na, kasama siya sa last 100 to get tickets. Pero when I called again, one ticket left daw. Tapos, wala na. Naubos yung tickets. At 10 p.m., he left empty-handed,” said Ruth.

Refusing to give up, Ruth asked her niece Dianne, also a LeBron fan, to search for tickets online. But they were not about to pay exorbitant scalper prices.

Big LeBron fan

He may be only 10 but Ronan has been a LeBron James fan since the NBA cager’s Cleveland Cavaliers days. Ronan said, “LeBron is a good shooter and has cool, dazzling dunks.”

Ronan was in school during the 2013 NBA Finals, when LeBron and the rest of Miami Heat battled the San Antonio Spurs, so the Ateneo student went to the library during recess to get updates and watch clips of the game.

RONAN waves to Lebron as the NBA champ points to him. JILL LEJANO

He doesn’t just enjoy watching basketball, he plays, too. Ronan said, “I love basketball, it keeps me from being bored. I always learn something new. It’s more fun to play than other sport I’ve tried. Basketball makes me happy.”

His mom said, “He started training when he was six. He really enjoys doing it. He hopes to join the Ateneo Blue Eagles one day.” His parents happily support his passion, encouraging his love of basketball. For his birthday in February, they gifted him with a pair of LeBron’s Nike basketball shoes.

He is a true LeBron fan—a big fan—so it was understandable that Ronan was sad to still be without tickets the night before the event. His mom said, “Naluluha siya. I asked, why are you crying? And he said, sayang, he didn’t have classes the next day, chance na niya sana to see LeBron na super idol niya.”

As a last-ditch effort, she posted this on Twitter: “Desperately looking for LeBron tickets at the MOA Arena tom. Raph would be so happy. Timing wala silang pasok! Sino meron diyan for sale?”

The next day, she woke up to a tweet from one of her Twitter followers, Jessica Abenir, who was willing to give her two Lower Box tickets. Ronan was going to see LeBron, after all.

Ruth had to work that day, so it was Dianne who went with Ronan to the Mall of Asia Arena. When “Showtime” host Jugs Jugueta heard that Ruth’s son was already in the arena, Jugs asked Ruth to go with him after their taping—he had an extra ticket.

FROM LOWER BOX TO COURTSIDE Ronan about to meet his idol. JILL LEJANO

“We ended up in the Upper Box area. We could see Ronan from where we were,” she said.

 

Luckiest

After his basketball clinic that thrilled both the fans and the young players he shared the court with, LeBron scanned the crowd for a special kid, someone who would be the recipient of the autographed jersey he just used. His eyes landed on Ronan. “The kid in red,” LeBron said, and soon, someone was lifting Ronan up from his Lower Box spot and handing him over to LeBron who was standing courtside. The crowd cheered. LeBron gave Ronan his jersey, high-fived him and whispered a special message that Ronan almost forgot because of his excitement. He later told his mom, “LeBron said something inspiring, something like not quitting on your dream.”

Later, Ronan told us, “I thought LeBron was pointing at someone else until he said “the boy in the red shirt.” I got so excited and had goose bumps.”

After the show, LeBron fans flocked around Ronan, asking to have photos taken with him and his jersey, calling him the luckiest little boy. Even at Starbucks where they made a post-show pit stop, LeBron fans still recognized him and asked for photos.

“Who would have thought? It’s like the universe conspired,” Ruth said, thrilled that her son’s wish came true. The kid who couldn’t wear his LeBron jersey to the Witness History Tour ended up going home with LeBron’s own.


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: ABS-CBN show , LeBron James , NBA superstar , Ronan Raphael Padriga , Ruth Padriga , Super , Witness History Tour , “Showtime”

  • styx

    while im happy for the kid….i wonder how many less fortunate kids missed this event….halos lahat ng nakapanood nasa middle class or nasa upper echelon ng society….may presyo talaga ang ligaya ng tao…..



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. How to enjoy Buntod
  2. Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  3. Life lessons I want to teach my son
  4. No tourist draw, Malang the croc will remain wild
  5. ‘Wild West’ Masbate’s pristine marine gems
  6. The best flavors of summer in one bite, and more
  7. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  8. Homemade yogurt, bread blended with pizza, even ramen
  9. What has happened to Barrio Fiesta and Singing Cooks & Waiters?
  10. Haneda International Airport: A destination on its own
  1. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  2. How to enjoy Buntod
  3. Historic Fort Bonifacio tunnel converted into a septic tank
  4. How Margie Moran-Floirendo keeps her dancer’s body
  5. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  6. Miss America: Don’t suspend teen over prom invite
  7. ‘Wild West’ Masbate’s pristine marine gems
  8. Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  9. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  10. Life lessons I want to teach my son
  1. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  2. Mary Jean Lastimosa is new Miss Universe Philippines
  3. Did Angara ruin Pia Wurtzbach’s chances at Bb. Pilipinas?
  4. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  5. Vinegar test helpful vs cervical cancer
  6. From Jeannie to mom of suicide victim
  7. San Vicente beaches hidden but not for long
  8. Borgy and Georgina are back; others are off–again
  9. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  10. Sen. Angara: I thought Pia Wurtzbach gave a good answer

News

  • Security in place for Obama as police hope for ‘peaceful’ visit
  • Retired SC justice Lorenzo Relova; 98
  • Ligots fight 2nd forfeiture case
  • PH will be partly cloudy in afternoon, evening—Pagasa
  • Ex-COA chief nabbed for plunder
  • Sports

  • Sharapova advances to Stuttgart quarterfinals
  • Galedo caps ride of redemption
  • Beermen, Express dispute second semis slot today
  • Lady Agilas upset Lady Bulldogs in four sets
  • NLEX roars to 7th D-League win
  • Lifestyle

  • ‘Recovered’ Banksy works on display ahead of sale
  • Marinduque: Visiting the ‘palm of the ocean’
  • First at Vatican in 60 years
  • How Jing Monis Salon gave Krissy the pixie
  • Want to be a supermodel? Work on your inner beauty, says Joey Espino
  • Entertainment

  • Paul McCartney to play at Candlestick concert
  • Kristoffer Martin: from thug to gay teen
  • Has Ai Ai fallen deeply with ‘sireno?’
  • California court won’t review Jackson doctor case
  • Cris Villonco on play adapted from different medium
  • Business

  • PAL hailed for ban on shark fin cargo
  • BSP to change tint of P100 bill
  • Nielsen sees car buying boom in the Philippines
  • How author of best-seller exposed ‘one percent’ economic elite
  • Bangko Sentral readies new bank lending rules
  • Technology

  • Cloud strength helps Microsoft earnings top Street
  • Vatican announces hashtag for April 27 canonizations
  • Enrile in Masters of the Universe, Lord of the Rings?
  • Top Traits of Digital Marketers
  • No truth to viral no-visa ‘chronicles’
  • Opinion

  • Editorial Cartoon, April 25, 2014
  • No deal, Janet
  • Like making Al Capone a witness vs his gang
  • MERS-CoV and mothers
  • A graduation story
  • Global Nation

  • Only 4 Etihad passengers not accounted for
  • Abandoned in Malta,15 PH seamen return
  • Senator hopes PH will also get same vow
  • HK victims to get P115M; traders raised money
  • Afghan hospital guard kills 3 US doctors, including Fil-Am pediatrician
    Marketplace