BY MARIE TONETTE MARTICIO
TACLOBAN CITY – After a taho vendor has gone viral on the internet for riding his bike for 10 days from Laguna to Eastern Samar, a 27-year old construction worker who lost his job in Metro Manila did more than that.
He walked for over a month to finally reach home in MacArthur, Eastern Samar.
According to Armand Andor, personnel at the Department of Health (DoH) manning the control point, Roel Navidad walked first to Sorsogon last August where he was quarantined for 14 days.
After securing the documents on Sept. 16, he walked all the way to Matnog Port where he rode a boat to Allen, Northern Samar through the help of the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (MDRRMO) of Sorsogon.
Through the good heart of a truck driver, Navidad was able to ride to Jiabong, Samar where he continued his trip on foot for two days to the border control point in Taft, Eastern Samar.
His body aching – not to mention blistered feet – he finally reached this seaside city before he was fetched by the local government unit of MacArthur.
He is headed to Brgy. 4, Gen. MacArthur, Eastern Samar for another 14-day mandatory quarantine in their local quarantine facility.
Just like the story of most people who tried their luck in Metro Manila, Navidad left his hometown when he was only 19. His father died in 2001 when he was only 8 years old. He lived in MacArthur with his aunt until he decided to leave for work in 2012.
He lived with a relative until he went to Leyte in 2018 where he rambled before he went back to Metro Manila in 2019. Just like many others, Navidad lost his job due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
Navidad said he also went home to look for his only brother and check if his mother is still alive after almost seven years of having no contact with each other.
In March, five construction workers also walked for over three months to Leyte following the announcement of a lockdown for fear of hunger and COVID-19 infection. (Marie Tonette Marticio)