The death toll in the September 2, 2016 Roxas night market bombing in Davao City reached 15 following the demise of a pregnant massage therapist on Monday night.
Twenty-one-year-old Vicenta Depalubos Asperin, who was six months pregnant, died at the Metro Davao Medical and Research Center (MDMRC) at around 10:17 pm Monday, 11 days after she went into a coma as a direct result of the blast.
Quoting a medical report, the City Social Services and Development Office (CSSD) said Asperin died of heart failure and brain damage.
Her unborn baby also died but authorities are counting the death as one. “Based on the notes from the Local Civil Registrar, the counting should be one because the unborn baby remained inside the mother’s womb. They were not separated,” CSSDO chief Ma. Luisa Bermudo said.
Asperin had been severely injured in the blast when a splinter entered her nose and went straight to her brain.
According to her brother, Gregorio Depalubos, Asperin was declared brain-dead by her attending physician a few minutes before her last breath on Monday night.
Depalubos recalled that before falling into a coma, his sister did not even know she had been hurt in a bomb blast.
“Before she was brought to the hospital, she even asked what has happened to her. And she fell into a coma after,” he said.
Their family is now asking for justice. “I hope the people responsible are arrested and that they are made to pay for what they have done. My sister didn’t do them wrong. She was innocent and she was pregnant. It is too much! They have to pay,” Depalubos said.
Asperin’s husband, John Lord, was in Nabunturan, Compostela Valley Province when the blast happened. The two got married in March and were expecting their first baby girl.
Asperin’s client at the time, 12-year-old Daniel Larrida, was killed on the spot.