Korean War vets’ kin cheer for Team Philippines in Asian Games
INCHEON—The Philippine cheering section at Songdo LNG Baseball Stadium is normally sparsely filled with athletes’ parents and relatives who scream their hearts out every time the Blu Girls come out to play.
One day, though, it was packed with Koreans waving Filipino flags and cheering heavily accented “Laban Pilipinas” choruses every time the Blu Girls get a hit or score a strike.
“They are relatives and descendants of Korean War veterans,” explained Philippine Sports Commission head Jolly Gomez.
Gomez said the group showed him a manifesto declaring their gratitude for the help the Philippines provided during the Korean War. The manifesto, shown to the Philippine Daily Inquirer, also thanked India and Thailand for their help.
A member of the group said that in return, they were planning to tour venues where the three teams would play and cheer for them. It’s their way of saying thanks, a member of the group said.
Gomez said they usually expressed their support in Korean cheers, but he taught them how to say “Laban Pilipinas” and the group quickly adopted the battle cry as its own.
It sounds, awkwardly scripted, yes, but it evokes a genuine feeling of gratitude and support.
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