Friday, November 22, 2019

Marcelino Palitog Sana-oy: A Man Of The Mountains Gone Too Soon

. Marcelino Palitog Sana-oy (March 30, 1990 - November 20, 2019)
. A man of the mountains gone too soon.

He liked to call himself the "simplest runner" and he lived up to it from the time he started racing in the mountains when he was just eighteen years old to when he started flying through mountain races here and abroad. He came into the trail running scene when he was crowned the first champion of the Cordillera Mountain Marathon in Mt. Pulag and the Cordillera Mountain Ultra in Itogon, Benguet.

He has run the King of the Mountain running series. He has won the Pilipinas Akyathlon crown. He even ran races outside the country.

His name was Marcelino Palitog Sana-oy. He tragically passed away today during a freak accident in Bokod, Benguet.

Anyone who has ever met Marcelino can attest to the reality that he was one of the kindest and most humble person you'll ever met. He can be really shy but he'll always be there meeting you with his infectious smile. A smile that extends from ear to ear.

The oldest in a family of six siblings, Marcelino came from a humble background. He grew up in Cabayo, Kayapa, Nueva Vizcaya. He moved to Bokod where he settled with his wife Fely and their young daughter Kee-Yah.

Life has always been a challenge for the decorated mountain runner. He has lost his mother. He lost a few of his fingers while working as a machine operator. Although he and his wife got blessed with a beautiful daughter they named Kee-Yah, life threw them a curve ball when Kee-Yah was diagnosed with cerebral palsy.

Despite all this, Marcelino kept trucking on with his optimistic attitude and an indomitable spirit. In hindsight, if you think about all the races he has finished and won, you get a sense of the type of man that he was even if you have never met him. He eats challenges for breakfast.

Today, we've lost a good husband, an exemplary father, and an inspiring ambassador of the sport of trail running. Runners will surely miss that petite man with a larger-than-life smile. Whether he was running as a racer, working in an aid station as a marshal, or sweeping runners, he has always been a ball of inspiration and positivity.

Rest in peace, Simplest Runner.