Presidential News Desk

HAWAII VISIT. President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. delivers a speech to Filipinos in Honolulu, Hawaii on Saturday (Nov. 18, 2023) at the Hawaii Convention Center. Marcos remembered the Filipinos and Filipino-Americans who perished in the Aug. 15 wildfire in Maui, Hawaii. (Photo courtesy of PCO)

MANILA – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. remembered on Saturday the Filipinos and Filipino-Americans who perished in the Aug. 15 wildfire in Maui, Hawaii.

US authorities said the number of people known to have died in the wildfire that leveled a Hawaiian town reached 106.

“Also, I wanted to come because we have been watching in the Philippines, pinapanood namin ang mga pangyayari sa Maui. At kawawa naman ang ating mga Pilipino na naging casualty (We have been monitoring the situation in Maui and we sympathize with the Filipinos affected),” Marcos said in a speech during a meeting with the Filipino community in Honolulu.

“We pray for strength and courage for the relatives and friends of those fatalities as well as those who are still recovering and rebuilding their lives in the aftermath of that terrible disaster.”

In his message, Marcos said he and First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos truly appreciated seeing the Filipinos in Hawaii to celebrate the close connection that the Philippines has with the island state.

With 25 percent of the population of the State of Hawaii having roots in the Philippines, the Philippines’ rich and diverse culture has become deeply intertwined in Hawaiian culture.

Marcos lauded them for giving the Philippines a very positive image in Hawaii.

“Thank you for all that you do for our country. And this is the characteristic that I have found everywhere that I go,” he said.

“And over the many years that Filipinos have been working abroad, and not only in the United States, not only in Hawaii pero kahit saan ako pumunta ay unang-una sinasabi ang gagaling ng Pilipino, ang sisipag, ang babait, mapagkakatiwalaan, at ang gagaling pang mag-English (wherever I go I always tell everyone the greatness of the Filipino, industrious, kind, trustworthy and speak English very well),” Marcos said.

The President arrived in Honolulu for a working visit after attending the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting in San Francisco, California, and a short visit in Los Angeles to also meet the Filipinos there. (Presidential News Desk)