JV Ejercito urges girlfriend of slain PMA cadet Darwin Dormitorio to ‘stay strong’

September 26, 2019 - 6:47 PM
JV Ejercito in Congress
File photo of former Senator JV Ejercito. (Philstar/AJ Bolando)

Former Senator JV Ejercito urged the girlfriend of slain PMA cadet Darwin Dormitorio to “stay strong” following her emotional post that paid homage to the young man.

In a reply to Ashley Ravidas’ tweet, the former legislator wrote, “Stay strong… May the Lord continue to give you strength during these trying times.”

Last night, Ravidas shared her sentiments about her boyfriend’s death and honored him by posing with his framed picture.

“It’s not easy loving a soldier, loving you has a high price to pay. I know my Cadet is watching over me, guiding me always. Continue serving up there, do what you love the most,” she tweeted.

“I know you’re in good hands right now. Rest well, my baby. I love you b, forever and always,” Ravidas continued.

In an interview, Ravidas considered Dormitorio a patriot who dreamed of changing the country for the better.

“He was an optimist [who believed] that we could change this country, that we could contribute to that change,” she said.

Ejercito had previously appealed for a review of Republic Act 8049 or the Anti-Hazing Law of 1995 in 2017 following the death of a University of Santo Tomas law student in the initiation rites of Aegis Juris fraternity.

He also filed a senate resolution in 2014 under the same intention when a student of De La Salle-College of St. Benilde lost his life due to hazing by the Tau Gamma Phi fraternity.

“Brotherhood should not entail brutal initiation to the point of beating neophytes to a pulp,” Ejercito said before.

“This society of ours doesn’t need organizations that masquerade as champions of brotherhood and sisterhood but are actuality promoting mafia-like practices and rituals,” he added.

The case of Dormitorio 

Darwin Dormitorio, a fourth-class cadet at Philippine Military Academy, died from cardiac arrest due to internal hemorrhage sustained from the hazing he suffered from his upperclassmen.

He was brought to the PMA hospital on August 20, September 6 and September 17.

According to Cordillera police director Brig. Gen. Ephraim Dickson, Dormitorio was physically maltreated on three separate occasions.

The injuries were so severe that he eventually sought for medical help, although doctors were now being probed for possible criminal liability as well.

Those involved in the hazing activities were identified as Cadet Third Class Shalimar Imperial, Cadet Third Class Felix Lumbag and Cadet First Class Axl Rey Sanupao.

The police have identified two more third-class cadets in the hazing pending the sworn statements of 14 witnesses.

Baguio City police chief Col. Allen Rae Co said that Dormitorio might have been punished for losing an upperclassman’s pair of combat boots.

Two other cadets identified as Dormitorio’s batchmates were also sent to the hospital from injuries suspected to be caused by hazing.