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Call for printers and contributors!

September 12, 2009


Hello, everyone!

Can anyone recommend printing companies for the souvenir  program? Based on the original project timeline, we should be able to  give the souvenir program to the printer by September 17. Quincy  has already contacted a printing press he knows, and I’ve also e-  mailed Avlich Printing, a company recommended by Ms Ritzi  Ronquillo. I’m looking for other contacts.

If you know of any reliable printing companies that produce high-quality outputs at reasonable prices, please let me know. Please give the company name, owner’s name, contact info (e-mail, telephone numbers), address, and some indication of the quality of their work (promptness, whether they’ve printed well-loved publications, whether they coordinate closely with clients to ensure that the output looks the way it was intended to look, etc.). This is so that we can come up with options that Tito Larry and Tita Anne can choose from.

By the way, if anyone would still like to contribute photos of Tara with friends and family, please feel free to do so! So far, the only photos I’ve received are from our Air Police Commander in ROTC. I was hoping to get more photos of Tara with family members and other friends.

Many thanks and see you tomorrow!

Angela B Serrano
0928 506 1117


Tara Santelices October fund-raising concert

September 11, 2009

HOPE and love were palpable the afternoon I entered Tara Santelices’ bedroom.

“It is the one thing we hold on to so we cannot let it go,” Larry Santelices, Tara’s father, says.

Tara is in a bright green room, attended to by a midwife named Babes.

It was on August 9 last year that Tara was shot in the head by an unknown assailant inside a passenger jeepney. It was also the eve of Tara’s birthday.

The young woman had just graduated from the Ateneo de Manila University the year before with a degree in political science. She was active in the band circuit while working for the NGO Upland Marketing. “She had many dreams. She wanted to go to law school someday,” Santelices says. He bears no bitterness for what has happened. “We choose to be thankful for the 23 years that we were given, when she was healthy and so full of life.”

Tara’s brain was damaged. Shrapnel remain in her head. When I went to see her, it did look like she was just sleeping yet opening her dark brown eyes once in a while. Her hair tied into a neat ponytail, she looked much healthier than the last time I saw her at the hospital.

Larry and Anne say that once in a while, she gives them a miracle. “I’d like to believe that she can see,” Anne says. “She looks at us intently using her good eye (her left eye is blind and totally damaged), and every now and then, when she is awake, she grips my hand firmly or blinks her eyes. I know she is there, somewhere,” Anne relates.

The couple and their two other daughters, Iya and Gita, shuttle between their home in Cainta and the small townhouse in Quezon City owned by Anne’s brother who works overseas. Tara lives with her grandmother and the two midwives who rotate on 12-hour shifts.

The Santelices family is happier and more settled now that she has been brought home after an eight-month confinement at The Medical City, where their bill reached a whopping P4 million. Santelices says the hospital was kind enough to give them time to pay for the bill, a huge part of which was subsidized by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.

However, the balance of around P1.3 million is something they continue to struggle with on a day-to-day basis. This is in addition to P90,000 a month for Tara’s care and the family’s other needs. Tara’s milk alone, Peptamen, costs them at least a thousand pesos per can each day.

The couple says once in a while they wonder how much longer they will be able to sustain Tara. “Her heart is strong now, but what do we do when the organs start to fail?” Yet, they continue to be buoyed by their faith and hope for a miracle. “Nothing in this life is really under our control. Not once did we question God,” Anne says. “There must be a reason for all of this. Always, there is a reason for the pain.”

Difficult journey

Unfortunately, the Cainta police declared the case closed, saying they had already caught the culprit and shot him down. However, Larry says two witnesses from the scene said the man the police caught was not the same one who shot Tara.

“That is the difficult part of this journey, knowing the man who shot our daughter continues to roam the streets,” Larry says. But rather than focus on being angry, the couple chose to focus their energy on work, caring for Tara, and “Tara’s Theme,” a fund-raising concert they plan to put up in October to pay off the debts incurred with Tara’s hospitalization. It’s amazing how people have come together, to perform the songs and the music Tara loved while she was growing up. José Mari Chan, Karylle and Bloomfields will perform at the show.

As I was leaving the Santelices’ townhouse, I recalled what Dr. Jerome Groopman, professor of immunology at Harvard Medical School and chief of Experimental Medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, wrote in his best-selling book “The Anatomy of Hope”: “To hope under the most extreme circumstances is an act of defiance that permits a person to live his life on his own terms. It is part of the human spirit to endure and give miracle a chance to happen.”

(lifted from the column “Roots and Wings” of the Philippine Daily Inquirer dated July 25, 2009 by Cathy S. Babao-Guballa)


September 11, 2009

Friends, we already have web presence! Currently, we have an email (, a blog (this one! 😀 hehehe.) a facebook profile page AND event page ( and in a bit a twitter page as well.

As the event draws nearer, please send us your support by forwarding the info to your friends and inviting more people to attend. Let’s make this event a memorable one, and we won’t be able to do it without everyone’s help.  We still need attendees and hopefully, fill up the Meralco Theater in time.

We are also still needing sponsors, so if you’re interested in helping out in that way, let us know asap. We have sponsorship packages available and it would be a huge help for the event if more people pitch in. And if you have products, i believe we also have booths available.

Kaya natin ‘to! Mark your calendars, October 4, 2009, 7pm.

– Quincy Gonzales


By the way, if you know anyone who would like to submit content about tara – writeups, old photos you had with her, soundclips, anything! – kindly send them to so that we can include them in the event’s souvenir program. 🙂  Also, if you see articles posted about tara, what happened to her, reactions about tara’s incident or the concert, either here or elsewhere, please forward us the link or source so that we can cross-post it on this blog.

thanks so much!

Tara’s Theme: Music, Friendship and Love (A Benefit Concert)

September 11, 2009
A benefit concert

A benefit concert

You are cordially invited to watch a benefit concert entitled “ TARA ’S THEME: MUSIC, FRIENDSHIP & LOVE” on October 4, 2009 (Sunday) 7PM at the Meralco Theater in Ortigas.

Featured artists include multi-awarded singer-songwriter Jose Mari Chan, Dulce, Karylle, The Bloomfields and Saffron Speedway bands, Tux,  Philippine Madrigal Singers, chorales/glee clubs from Assumption Antipolo, Ateneo de Manila, De La Salle University and College of  Saint Benilde,  PPO Flute & String Trio, Julie Borromeo Performing Arts, the House of Dance, Musica Chiesa,  piano virtuoso Nick Nangit, guitarist Mel Orosa who will showcase various genres of  music and dance.

Tara’s Theme

This musical show is a tribute to our daughter, Tara, who died on July 27 this year at Medical City of cardiac arrest resulting from multiple-organ failure. She had hoped to recover from serious brain damage she suffered from a gunshot wound in the head in a robbery hold-up inside a passenger jeepney on her way home with a friend on August 6, 2008, her 23rd birthday. She was confined in Medical City , Ortigas where after being comatose for weeks, she slightly regained consciousness and could breathe on her own.  Yet the doctors’ prognosis was that because of the gravity of the damage to her brain, she would be in a vegetative state all her life.  When finally she was discharged after staying for 10 months at the hospital, she had been declared as totally and permanently disabled.  On July 23, after only a little more than a month at home, we rushed her again to the hospital because of high-grade fever, low blood pressure, and fast pulse rate. Test results showed that she was already suffering from serious kidney and liver infections.  She never recovered and her heart finally beat its last in the early morning of July 27.

Prior to the tragic incident, Tara, who finished her primary and secondary education in Assumption Antipolo and AB Political Science in Ateneo de Manila University in 2007, was working as a researcher for a non-government organization and was the guitarist in an all-female rock band and duo.  She dabbled in music, arts, literature and short film.

This benefit concert aims:

to generate enough funds to help settle the unpaid balance of the medical bills and professional fees
and give tribute to her thru the performance of some of the music and dance that she loved.

TICKET  PRICES are as follows:

Orchestra (A-D)   ———————-     Php1,500.00
Orchestra (E-L)    ———————-           1,000.00
Loge                   ———————-              800.00
Balcony              ———————-              500.00

We humbly seek your support for our daughter’s cause.


125 Sunrise Drive, Brookside Hills, Cainta, Rizal
For tickets and reservations, please call 655.52.66 or text (0922) 855.52.66 / (0922) 892.85.58  or send an email to

Taras Theme from “Gone With the Wind” – Erich Kunzel