Doris Deguilmo-Lauron, who worked as a teacher in Wuhan, China gave a lengthy and heartfelt appreciation to the government for their safe repatriation from the said city. She together with other repatriated workers from Wuhan are now safe after the quarantine period and are now COVID-19 free.

Read her heartfelt post below (reposted from Facebook).

I am one of those Filipinos who worked and live in Wuhan as a teacher; some of us are musicians, office workers, and factory workers. Some of us worked in China for several years already. And because of that, we were able to support our families or even extended families here in the Philippines. We worked hard for them, enduring the cold weather during winter and the scorching temperature during summer. We worked every day without complaining. We gave our best because we want to keep the right impression of our Chinese and Foreign employers about how dedicated Filipinos are in terms of job performance. Even if we already heard about a particular virus around Wuhan, we still work and just started to wear masks and frequently washed our hands. We thought it would get better soon until last January 23; we received a notice from our compound and building managers about the plan of locking down the city to prevent the spread of the virus.We did not believe such notice. Who could lock down a city of 11 million people? That’s impossible! But yes, they did! They started by halting public transport like buses, subways, trains, taxis, and airplanes to not even allowing private cars. If you’re a private car owner, you also cannot insist because gas stations were also ordered not to load gas to any private cars. Yes, we got stuck in our apartments. Some of us were lucky that we were able to stock up food that could last even for months. We were still fine during the first week of not getting out, but as days added and the number of confirmed cases of infected and deaths also kept increasing, we started to feel anxious about our situation. Families back home were so worried. They kept telling us not to go outside as possible. And of course, we don’t want them to worry, so we kept updating them with our situation.

When other nationalities already started evacuation, we also began to fear for ourselves. Our British friends went off first, then Americans, Koreans, Japanese, French, Singaporeans, Cambodians, Canadians, Australians, and more. What about us? Will we be repatriated too? Does our government care for us? Maybe not because there’s only a few of us here and most Filipinos in the country don’t want us home. They thought that we already have the virus, and they feared that we will only be infecting others. Fake news and negative comments were everywhere in social media, which added to our stress and anxiety. Some of us just deactivated our social media accounts, to stay away from stressful wrong information. Even though we already started to feel scared for ourselves, we kept our faith and trust in the Lord. We kept holding on to His promise in Psalms 91:7 that says “A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will never come near you”…. And yes, miracles happened through our compassionate leaders in the government. We are here now in front of you- healthy and COVID-19 free.

On behalf of our group from Wuhan, it is my humble honor and distinct privilege to write this thank you message for those who are behind the successful repatriation. We hoped to know the specific names of people who are responsible for the success of the repatriation, which resulted in us being here, safe, well-taken care, well fed, well provided, and well supported. We may not all know your names, but we are aware of your efforts and how you all cared for us.

We want to thank the officials of the Department of Foreign Affairs, DFA Secretary Teodoro Locsin, from the office of Philippine Consulate General Shanghai: Foreign Affairs USEC Brigido Dulay, Consul General Wilfredo Cuyugan, Consul Marlowe Miranda, Vice Consul Rene Reyes ng DOT Shanghai, officers Rowell Casaclang, Abdul Rahman, and Richard delos Santos, Civilian Volunteers: Cherry May, Tisoy, Edda, and Mr. Joe Santiago, who never failed to provide relief assistance to most Filipinos in Wuhan, checked our conditions through phone calls and provided us with updates about the government’s effort for our repatriation. To Mr. Mark Anthony Geguera and Mr. Sanny Darren Bejarin, who took a considerable risk getting into ground zero for our sake. These two took care of us with sincerity. They made sure that we never get hungry while we underwent the tedious process of getting out of Wuhan. We are grateful that the DFA leadership was able to pick these two courageous guys. They did great because they have great leaders. For sure, USEC Sarah Lou Arriola is one of them too. Thank you, ma’am.

To the DOH Team: Health Secretary Francisco Duque, Undersecretary of Health, Dr. Gerardo V. Baguyo, for giving us the utmost care: providing the basic things we need, including hygiene kits and meals, and for closely monitoring our health during the quarantine period. You indeed have an excellent team. We were able to keep the spirits high every day because of how you attended and treated us. We also thank the Bureau of Quarantine personnel.To The brave five of DOH: Dr. Labasan, Dr. Macalinao, nurses: Rowell Divinagracia and Jay Julian, and the medical technologist Elmer Collong. Thank you so much.

To the local government officials of Capas, Tarlac, headed by Mayor Reynaldo Catacutan and Vice Mayor Roseller Rodriguez, thank you for the hospitality. Thank you, Mayor, for the exceptional lunch we had during Valentines’ Day.

To the Royal Air flight crew, especially to my fellow Cebuano, Capt. Al Bathan, and Roel Marantan. Salamat og daghan mga sir.

To Speaker Allan Peter Cayetano, and Senator Bong Go, who we believed also helped in the repatriation process.

Most importantly, we are more than grateful to the father of our nation, President Rodrigo Roa-Duterte, who gave the marching order to repatriate us-Filipinos in Wuhan and other places in Hubei Province, China. It is such a blessing from above that he’s the president of the Philippines when things like this happened. You are a great father and leader who understands the importance of teamwork and how to incorporate everyone’s skills. Tay, daghang salamat sa imong pagpangga og malasakit kanamo.

In situations like this, we should remember and be encouraged in what the Lord said in 2 Corinthians 4:8-9, that says ” We are hard-pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed….. An American Pastor, Joel Osteen once said, “We’re not going to understand everything that happens. Faith is trusting God when life doesn’t make sense.

Kami pong mga narepatriate from Wuhan, kasama ang aming boung pamilya, lubos po ang aming pasasalamat sa inyong lahat.

May we have a blissful and virus- free days ahead.

Doris Deguilmo-Lauron and the rest of the repatriated Filipinos from Wuhan

View her post in Facebook in the link below.

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