Tragedy as former St Luke’s student dies in Philippines typhoon

A FORMER St Luke’s schoolboy was today confirmed dead in the Philippines after his body was discovered by rescuers in the aftermath of the typhoon.

Jairo Ducusin from Harlow in Essex had been missing since the disaster struck 12 days ago. His father Jeffrey and his grandmother had already been declared dead.

The six-year-old’s mother Joy, who survived the storm that has claimed around 4,000 lives, identified her son from bodies sent to one of three mass burial sites in the country.

Mr and Mrs Ducusin, both nurses, had lived in Harlow for ten years.

They only returned home to the Philippines two months ago.

Today St Luke’s Catholic Primary, where Jairo was a pupil, paid tribute to the family.

Ann-Marie McCann, executive headteacher, said: “The family were very popular and very well-known in the area. It is awfully sad news. We have a tight-knit Filipino community here and I know lots of people will be terribly sad at the news.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with their families.”

The school as well as the local church, Holy Cross Roman Catholic Church will be holding a special mass for the family.

Nurses at the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow, where the Ducusins worked, expressed their shock at the news. One former colleague said: “I have had the privilege to work with Jeff. Such a warm and nice gentleman. One of the best nurses, truly caring for his patients who will be deeply missed.”

Typhoon Haiyan killed at least 3,974 people and a further 1,186 are missing, according to the latest official figures.

The typhoon – which had some of the strongest winds ever recorded on land – also left about 500,000 people homeless.

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