Ramie Igaña fondly called by his TTB and Ungo teammates as Daddy Rams, had a fatal bike accident during the Ironman 70.3 held last August 5, 2012 here in Cebu, Philippines.
He was doing the bike leg for their relay team TTB Extreme together with Doc Benj who did the swim and his wife Doc Mitty who was to run the half-marathon.
I learned about what happened Sunday evening when my friend Richard Manila sent me a text message and I was shocked about the news. It was so hard to believe, I told myself this could not be true. I immediately went to find any device I could use to log on to facebook to know more details and sure enough there it was. Friends were posting about the incident and it was beginning to sink in that it had really happened 😦
I was at the foot of the Marcelo Fernan Bridge during the event watching the athletes ride by and cheered all the friends that I could recognize. I didn’t see Ramie approach and was only able to recognize him after he passed because he had “RAM” printed on the back of his tri-suit. That was the last time that I would see him.
I’ve only known Ramie and Doc Mitty for a little over a year but I can say that I know only a few people who are as kind and generous as both of them. All of the TTB members who always trained and went out with Ramie were devastated and you could feel their pain just by reading their posts and comments. Just thinking of what Doc Mitty must be going through breaks my heart 😦
My wife and I went to Ramie’s wake last night at St. Peter Memorial Chapels and still approaching the place we could see the very long line of cars parked along the road. It was because the parking lot of St. Peter was already overflowing. I would estimate the parked cars going for more than a kilometer on each side of the road. The chapel itself was also overflowing with people. Runners, friends, family, coworkers, and so many others couldn’t fit inside. This goes to show how well-loved and respected Ramie was by everyone.
I didn’t really know what to say to Doc Mitty aside from offering my condolences or what to expect but when I met her inside the chapel, I could immediately see that she is one strong person. Her faith in God has given her the strength to cope. It seemed that everyone unconsciously drew inspiration and strength emanating from her instead of the other way around.
Doc Mitty I know that you will continue to be strong for yourself and your family as much as Ramie has touched and inspired a lot of people’s lives.
Ride on, Daddy Rams…