Wife of Pampanga Rep. Aurelio Gonzales among fatalities in Resorts World attack

June 2, 2017 - 7:53 PM
An injured hotel guest is seen outside of a hotel after a shooting incident inside Resorts World Manila in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines June 2, 2017. REUTERS/Stringer

MANILA, Philippines — Elizabeth Panlilio-Gonzales, wife of Pampanga Rep. Aurelio Gonzales, was among the 38 confirmed fatalities in the Resorts World Manila attack in Pasay City on Friday.

Elizabeth’s name was included in the list of victims released by the Resorts World management.

Her death confirmed by House Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas, who sought the help of Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Ronald dela Rosa to locate Elizabeth’s remains.

Fariñas disclosed to House media reporters a text message from the PNP chief confirming the report.

”Sir, positive wife of Rep. of Dong Gonzales of Pampanga is Elizabeth Panlilio Gonzales — died in the incident. We are still looking for her sister Consolacion P. Mijares. No report yet,” the message read.

Authorities said 38 people had been confirmed dead from the incident, including the gunman.

Stephen James Reilly, Resorts World chief operations officer, said they could confirm 35 fatalities, excluding the gunman: 22 guests — 10 females and 13 males — and 13 staffers — 10 females and three males — who were mostly killed by smoke inhalation.

The casualties include 78 others who were wounded during the stampede at the casino-hotel.

Twenty-three of those hurt were brought to St. Luke’s Global City in Taguig, 17 others were rushed to Remington Hospital in Pasay City, 14 to San Juan de Dios Hospital in Pasay, 21 to Villamor Airbase Hospital also in Pasay, and three more to Pasay City General Hospital.

In a statement, Quezon City Rep. Alfred Vargas expressed his deep condolences to the bereaved families of the victims, including the Pampanga lawmaker’s wife.

”My condolences to my colleague Congressman Gonzales for his loss. I join him in prayers for the eternal rest of his wife’s soul,” Vargas said.

It is with a great emotion and deep sadness to learn the death of these innocent people. Our condolences to the bereaved family,” he added.

Vargas appealed to the public to refrain from making “fake” or “alarming” stories about the incident.

For his part, Muntinlupa Rep. Ruffy Biazon also warned against spreading unverified and dubious sources and information through social media.

“Believe only what is reported in legitimate news organizations and do not relay to others information about the incident that did not come from these official sources of information,” Biazon said.

Biazon also advised the public to refrain from making “unnecessary comments particularly those that are speculative, political, or uninformed.”

”They only serve to fuel the confusion and fear cause by an incident like this during these times. Let us allow the proper authorities to do their work without the additional burden of having to handle self-inflicted terror by an irresponsible public,” he added.

Gabriela lawmakers, Emmi de Jesus and Arlene Brosas, also called for sobriety and vigilance following the incident.