A Pinoy husband and father of five died on Christmas Day when he aided in rescuing children who had broken through the ice on Jackson Lake in Wrightwood, Calif.
Claro "Bhoy" O. Claridad II, 41, slipped beneath the ice and died from hypothermia.
Bhoy was born in Manila and has lived in California for 23 years. He and his wife Judith and their five children - all under 12 - resided in Victorville in the last four years. Bhoy was a Verizon store manager and he was also a former U.S. Army man.
"He risked his life for something he would do for everybody," said co-worker Diane Bach in a report. "He doesn't think, he just acts. No matter what anybody needs." In the same article, Bach described Bhoy as the manager that everyone loved who brought lavish lunches to work, "oftentimes wrapped in banana paper."
The Claridads went to the snowy lake for a family picnic to celebrate Christmas, not knowing that it will be their last day together.
When the incident happened, Judith had momentarily left to change her two youngest daughters. When she came back, she was informed that Bhoy has been brought to the hospital.
There, Bhoy's belongings were returned to her, including a hat with a Filipino flag, according to a news report.
A trust fund has been established to help Judith and the Claridad children.
Donations may be made at any Washington Mutual branch under the Claridad name and account number 3403135523.
Donations may be sent to Claridad Fund, c/o Washington Mutual, 12690 Hesperia Road, Victorville, CA 92302.