Mom of missing UP student still hoping, praying

Concepcion Empeño (center) and Erlinda Cadapan, mothers of missing UP students Karen Empeño and Sherlyn Cadapan hold pictures of their daughters during a meeting with Sen. Mar Roxas. RODEL ROTONI/INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

Concepcion Empeño (center) and Erlinda Cadapan, mothers of missing UP students Karen Empeño and Sherlyn Cadapan hold pictures of their daughters during a meeting with Sen. Mar Roxas. RODEL ROTONI/INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

Allan Macatuno | Inquirer.net
October 30, 2014

SUBIC, Philippines—With no grave to visit, the mother of Karen Empeño, one of two students of the University of Philippines missing since 2006, will observe All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day with hopes and prayers to find closure for her daughter’s fate.

Despite the pain, Concepcion Empeño, 65, said she has good memories with her daughter, who, along with Sherlyn Cadapan, was abducted allegedly by soldiers in Bulacan province in 2006.

Empeño, a school principal at the Culiat Elementary School in Barangay (village) Culiat in Masinloc town, Zambales province, said her daughter was “very friendly” and would always bring her friends to their house.

She said she would join other families and relatives of the missing or the disappeared on Nov. 2 at Plaza Miranda in Quiapo, Manila, to offer prayers and flowers and light candles for their loved ones.

She said they would also write Pope Francis, who will visit the country in January, to seek his help in achieving justice for their missing family members.

“I will bring a photograph of my daughter for that gathering. Although it seems like we’re doing this for the departed, still I don’t want to think that she’s gone forever,” she said. “I’m still waiting for Karen [to come home].”

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