BINMALEY, Pangasinan – The family of Angelyn Aguirre, the caregiver who, along with her 70-year old employer, was killed by militant Hamas during a shock assault near the Gaza Strip over the weekend, still can’t believe she is gone.
Erlinda, Angelyn’s mother, in a media interview Thursday night, said her daughter regularly updates them, through online chats, on what is happening in her area.
“Wala na kunoy terorista ya akaloob ed Kibbutz ‘mi. Akatanggap si alagak na message diad kila Net (The terrorists are already inside Kibbutz, Mommy. My employer received a message from Net).”
This was the last voice message sent by Angelyn to her mother during the attack of the terrorist group in Kibbutz Kfar Azar that started last October 7.
Angelyn and her employer were living at the house near the Gaza Strip border.
In the next few days, Erlinda learned of what happened to Angelyn from her other daughter, Angenica, who is also an OFW working in Israel and who lives in an area that is 30 minutes away by land travel from where her sister was working.
Based on information from Angenica, Erlinda said Angelyn and her employer ran to the bomb shelter during the airstrikes.
Angelyn’s employer was in a video call with her children and the caregiver’s decision to protect the older woman by not leaving her was seen by the Israelis’ family.
“Walang lock yung bomb shelter kaya napasok sila (The bomb shelter has no lock, that’s why the terrorists were able to enter it),” Erlinda said.
Jerusalem Deputy Mayor Fleur Hassan-Nahoum, in a post over X, formerly Twitter, last October 11, hailed the loyalty and dedication of the Filipina caregiver.
“Despite having a chance to flee the Hamas terror attacks, Angeline showed unbelievable humanity and loyalty by remaining by Nira’s side during the violence, resulting in both of them being brutally murdered by Hamas,” she said.
“Unimaginable honor in the face of evil,” she added.
Erlinda was in tears as she remembered Angelyn, who, she said, is a sweet and caring daughter.
“Nagbi-video call siya lagi. Minsan umaga hanggang gabi. Minsan basta nagsasalita na lang siya, basta naka-open lang yong camera namin habang nanonood kami ng TV (She always video call us. Sometimes from morning till night time. Sometimes we would just let her talk as long as our cameras are open while we are watching television),” she said.
She recounted that their family was supposed to have a big celebration by the end of October as four of them are celebrating their birthdays this month.
“Angelyn is always the first to greet us in our group chat. She was that,” she said.
Angelyn, from Barangay Bantag of this town and a caregiver for more than six years, went back to the Philippines for her wedding in September 2022.
She stayed in the country only for a week but has plans to go to Malta or Canada, said another sibling, Wilma.
Erlinda said President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has called Angenica expressing his condolences to the family and vowed that the government will expedite the repatriation of her daughter’s remains.
“Sana sabay na silang pauwiin (I hope they will both return here at the same time),” she said.
Meanwhile, Overseas Workers Welfare Administration-Ilocos regional office director Gerardo Rimorin, in a phone interview, said the family of the OFW will receive death and burial benefits amounting to PHP200,000 and a PHP20,000 funeral grant.
He said OWWA, along with other national government agencies, will arrange for the repatriation of the OFW’s body. (PNA)