Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) legend Ricardo Brown, who is in the country for the first time since his retirement in 1991, had planned to squeeze in a visit to comedy king Dolphy at the Makati Medical Center either today or Thursday but unfortunately he was greeted by the tragic news last night of the movie icon’s passing.
“Sayang talaga,” Brown told Yahoo! PH Sports in a private message. “I was planning to visit him last night but the dreadful traffic kept me from doing so. I had plans to see him today or tomorrow, but then he left us last night.”
On his Facebook page, Brown said of his Manila visit, “Obviously, this is all very bittersweet now with the passing of Tito Dolphy last night. I was in touch with the family last evening and was unable to visit the hospital on the scheduled time due to the dreadful EDSA traffic… But we must hold onto the fact that Tito Dolphy is now no longer suffering and is at total peace with God Himself. Let us continue to pray for the family.”
Brown, who was named PBA MVP in 1985, starred with Dolphy in the 1987 action-comedy flick “Action Is Not Missing”, a spoof of the Chuck Norris POW movie “Missing In Action”. The movie, which also starred former beauty queen Pebbles De Asis, the late Francis Magalona, and Zsa Zsa Padilla’s father Sonny Padilla, was an entry to the Metro Manila Film Festival and was a box-office hit.
Brown played the platoon commander Lieutenant Longshot, in reference to his reputation as a deadly outside shooter on the hardcourt, while Dolphy was the bumbling Private Canderet.
Last year, the player known as the Quick Brown Fox received a package in the mail. When he opened it, to his surprise he found a framed photo of him and Dolphy taken during the shooting “Action Is Not Missing”, along with a dedication from the comedy king.
The dedication said, “To dear Ricky, mabuhay and prayers to you and your loved ones. Always, Uncle Dolphy.”
Brown said on Facebook in April of last year: “I opened the mail one day a few weeks ago and to my surprise, this photo and frame were in a package addressed to me. When I saw it was my picture with Tito Dolphy and it had his personal dedication to me... well, tears came to my eyes and my heart became heavy with joy. I will treasure this gift from the King of Comedy for the rest of my life, and I look forward to seeing him again when I return home to Manila later this year. As gentle and compassionate a man as I have ever met... I am blessed to have been touched by the great Dolphy Quizon.”
Brown is in town on a nine-day whirlwind visit and will be honored by the PBA on Sunday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
A tribute to the Comedy King can be found at ph.omg.yahoo.com/dolphy/.