Other than the public, even actress Heart Evangelista, a close friend of Senator Miriam Santiago, was shocked over the lawmaker’s recent revelation about her stage 4 lung cancer.
“Nag-usap kami two, three days ago. Isang oras kami nag-usap noon. Dun niya sinabi sa ‘kin na may sakit siya but the way she said it, she was very strong na parang hindi ako masyado nag-wo-worry [otherwise,] siguro ngayon dapat super iyak na ‘ko kasi parang nanay ko siya,” she shared at the Saturday episode of Startalk where she happens to be one of the hosts.
The feisty senator positively detailed that she has been undergoing therapy for the cancer on her left lung for weeks now. With the tablet that she’s taking as of the moment and the cancer cells not spreading, she remarked that she might be back in office after six weeks.
Heart further opened up that The Iron Lady of Asia assured her that she will be okay.
“Pero the way she said it, it seems like she will be okay kasi the cancer is concentrated only on one area so meron siyang iniinom na gamot and she said in a few days, she’ll be fine so not to worry about it daw,” said Heart.
Despite the senator’s assurance, Heart nevertheless called for prayers for her citing that, “She has served as an inspiration to a lot of people… We should pray for her. With her strength and with God, she will be okay. We love you, Tita Miriam.”
According to Heart, she is very well aware that Miriam has already been under medication for various illnesses for a while now. But the thing is she had no idea that the feisty lawmaker had been battling cancer.
“Nung nag-New York pa lang kami nun, I think this was two years ago, sobrang lamig talaga doon pero siya, naka-sleeveless siya so lahat ng tao, tinitingnan kasi naka-sleeveless siya kasi naiinitan siya sa sobrang dami niyang iniinom [na gamot] kasi ang dami niyang kakaibang sakit,” she added.
The two first met when heart was a little over 14-years-old with the senator introducing herself to her and asking her a rhetorical question about success. From then on Heart considered her as her second mother and their friendship strengthened over the years despite being part of two different industries.
During the renewal of the senator's wedding vows with husband Jun Santiago on their 40th anniversary last June 2011, Heart even served as her maid of honor. As she has previously shared, it was also the senator who introduced her to her current flame Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero back in 2012.
Miriam, in previous reports, has described Heart as her “virtual daughter” whom she got fond of because she was his late son’s crush.