‘Goodbye, Ellah Joy’

Posted on February 21, 2011


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

by Reporter Ador Mayol


Family and friends of six-year-old student Ellah Joy Pique held on to their hope that those who killed her will be brought to justice swiftly as they brought Ellah Joys remains its final resting place yesterday.

“I hope the persons who killed the child won’t find peace. I cannot accept what happened. I’m praying that the issue will be solved,” said Adelaida Caparida, Ellah Joy’s grandmother, who fainted just before her granddaughter was buried inside the Pardo Cemetery in Cebu City.

Relatives and medical attendants gave first aid to Caparida.

At least 500 people attended Ellah Joy’s funeral which started with a procession from Minglanilla town, south Cebu.

They came in a convoy of three buses and two trucks.

Msgr. Eliseo Gamallo led the Mass of Christian Burial at Sto. Tomas de Villanueva Church in barangay Pardo, Cebu City.

“I pity the child who died of others’ evil deeds,” the priest said in his homily.

“We pray that eternal rest be granted to an angel like her.

“Do not take revenge. We have a God who is the author of life… If someone other than God takes away life from us, let us entrust him or her to the Lord who shall impose what is due that person,” the priest said.

“We pray that Ellah’s soul would awaken the persons who took the life of an innocent child,” he added.

Ellah Joy’s white and gold coffin was placed in front of the altar throughout the 1 p.m. Mass.

Past 2 p.m. it was brought out of the church.

Many of those who joined the funeral march wailed.

“My heart is filled with pain,” said Ligaya, Ellah Joy’s mother.

Ellah Joy’s father Renante said “I’m exhausted. My strength is gone).”

The couple have two other children aged 14 and eight.

Ellah was their youngest child.

Lucia Caparida, Ellah Joy’s grandaunt, said the girl’s death should open the eyes of the people about the need to protect children.

“My heart seems to break apart. We couldn’t afford to hurt Ellah,” Lucia said.

“I hope her killers will realize what they have done.”

Mary Jane Amancio, 31, and Ellah’s neighbor, said she will miss the girl who used to play near their house.

“Ellah Joy was a good and jolly girl,” Amancio said.

One of Ellah’s six-year-old classmates also attended the funeral.

Posters bearing pleas for justice for Ellah Joy were plastered on the victim’s hearse.

Ellah Joy’s body was found off a cliff in barangay Guibuangan, Barili last Feb. 9.

She was abducted by two persons on Feb. 8 outside school in Calajoan, Minglanilla town, south Cebu.

A Norwegian, Erik Sven Berger and his nurse fiancee, Karen Castro Esdrelon, have been held as suspects in Ellah Joy’s kidnap and murder based on the word of three child witnesses.

Video footage from a hotel shows that the couple were in a Cebu City hotel at the time Ellah Joy was kidnapped.

But the murdered girl’s relatives are convinced that Berger and Castro are the real culprits.

“Justice must be served. I’m convinced that [Berger and Esdrelon are the real culprits]. What they did was painful,” Lucia Caparida said.




Posted in: Uncategorized