Amid severe flooding caused by Typhoon Ulysses, actor Jericho Rosales and wife Kim Jones used their surfboards as they lent a hand to rescue efforts in Marikina, as seen in a video posted online.
The celebrity couple paddled through flood waters while calling out to fellow residents, “You need help?”
They were also captured in action in separate photos.
These never-before-seen video and photos surfaced days after they went viral online for helping out rescuers in the city they live in.
Netizen Sheena Elijan, who uploaded the video and photos, told The STAR’s Latestchika.com that the couple passed by their street as floodwaters rose Thursday morning.
“Nag-check po sila if okay po yung mga binaha sa village, kasi may part po na sobrang taas na ng baha. Sa amin di pa po ganun kataas,” she said.
In an interview with ABS-CBN, Jericho who is an avid surfer explained that they decided to bring out their surfboards because learning from past experience, “sometimes walang boats or flotation devices”.
Back in 2009, when tropical storm Ondoy heavily affected Marikina, the actor also offered his assistance to local rescue efforts.
In the aftermath of Ulysses, he lauded the first responders in Marikina and asked the public to show support and be patient with these rescue workers and volunteers.
He also launched a fundraiser with his wife for typhoon victims not just in Marikina but also in other hard-hit areas in Cagayan Valley, Isabela, Catanduanes and Quezon provinces.
Meanwhile, the Kapamilya star shared hi candid thoughts about the flooding situation in Marikina and in nearby Rizal during an Instagram live Q&A with fans on Sunday night.
“I love Marikina, I love Rizal. For me, Marikina is one of the best cities in the Philippines. 2009 when Ondoy happened, it was crazy, we were like argh! ‘Bakit kasi barado lahat ng mga drainage? Bakit kasi ganito, bakit ganyan?’ We were very, very frustrated but Ondoy taught us a lesson.
“If you have visited Marikina before typhoon Ulysses, it is the best, it is the cleanest that I have seen. Pwede kang pumunta sa palengke, pwede kang tumambay sa palengke dahil napakalinis niya,” he said, adding that at least twice-a-week he would bike around Marikina.
“And we love it, we bike around the river, punta ako sa bayan, sa munisipyo, paikot-ikot kami dito and saludo ako talaga. And sa Rizal lagi akong nagmo-motor diyan.
“So, we did well in terms of cleaning up. Inayos namin ang situation namin sa basura, sa drainage, lahat ng mga nangyari na ganyan. Even here, sa village namin, we fixed our creeks. Lahat ng pwede magflood, inayos namin lahat. And it was so effective and super proud talaga ako.”
Unfortunately, the flooding happened again. “The problem now, nung umulan sobrang daming tubig. And we all know that Typhoon Ulysses was worse, I guess, than Ondoy. Hindi natin inexpect na mangyayari ulit ito,” he lamented.
If people don’t want another Ulysses in the future, he stressed that there has to be a collective action, and it should start with individual effort.
“Let’s fix the garbage situation. Punta tayo sa ilalim and tingnan natin ang mga drainage, sewer, mga imburnal natin. Iwasan natin magtapon ng basura sa jeep, sa kalsada, mga sigarilyo sa kalye. ‘Pag nagyoyosi mga tao, pag kumakain ng candy, alam natin lahat na ugali natin nagtatapon ng basura kung saan-saan. Itapon natin sa sarili natin, mag-ayos tayo ng basura.
“Second, magtanim tayo ng sobrang daming puno, ‘wag tayo magputol ng puno. Yung mga puno na yan, napalaki ng silbi nyan. Sa dinami-dami ng kotse ngayon, sa dinami-dami ng mga nangyayari ngayon, siya yung humihigop ng masamang hangin at ng maraming tubig.”
Jericho believes there’s a bigger reason behind these worsening floods — climate change.
“Bakit yung mga bagyo, ganito na kalalakas, ganito na karaming tubig? I mean, I don’t know ano nangyari during the 1920s or 1930s; I don’t have all the data and facts. But, nangyayari ‘to because of global warming. Sobrang daming tubig.”
“So, it’s a collective effort. Mahirap i-blame lahat sa government. I think we need to discard yung mga ugali natin na minsan mindless tayo na nagtatapon ng mga bagay, putol ng puno or di tayo nagtatanim, basta kung ano-ano nalang. We have to really, again, check how we can contribute to the cities we live in,” he concluded.