A diehard fan, Danilo Coma from Pampanga, honored former Philippine Basketball Association superstar and senator Robert “Sonny” Jaworski with a million handwritten “Jawo” words in an art work as a gift on the cage icon’s 77th birthday on Wednesday.
“Nabuo na ang history sa lahat ng panahon, a million Jawo words, si idol Big J lang ang meron nito. At sinobrahan ko pa, for sure na siguradong One Million Jawo words. Ang buong total ay 1,007,777,” Coma said.
The fan also fervently wishes for the complete healing of his idol so he can see his efforts.
Filipino fans like Coma have grown to love the PBA legend not only due to his cage exploits, but also because of his work outside the basketball court.
Desiree Guasch, Jaworki’s former staff at the Senate, where he served from 1998 to 2004, recalled that Jaworski was active in the Environment Committee and that he traveled a lot and reached remote areas to check on erring companies.
“Tatlong cement companies napasara niya,” said Guasch, referring to firms that discharge waste products, causing adverse effects to the environment.
At one time, Jaworski visited a victim of toxic waste emission at the hospital in 1999. The young man, who was a basketball fan, recognized Jaworski and was delighted to see the former Ginebra mentor, who asked the victim what gift would make him happy.
The man requested a Nike Kobe Bryant shoe model and got his wish.
As Ginebra’s playing coach, Jaworski was known to accommodate fans’ requests for autographs and pictures, even if he was the last player to leave the playing venue or when the lights were already turned off.
“Happy birthday to the Living Legend Jawo! May God lay His healing hand upon you and grant your fervent wish. Thank you for being so kind and accommodating to us, your fans. I can still remember when we watched your team play, you went out of the dugout just to entertain us, talked to us, and thanked us for our support to the team. I love you, Jawo,” said Rosemary Ang, in a comment to the post of Jaworki’s son Dodot.
Dodot posted: “Maligayang kaarawan sa aking Daddy na nagturo sa akin paano magmahal, tumayo sa pagkakadapa, at makidama sa mga nangangailangan. Mula pa noon, ikaw ang aking inspirasyon na maging mabuting ama, kaibigan, at lingkod-bayan na magsisilbi sa mga Pilipino nang may puso at katapatan. I am always proud to be called your son.”
Jaworski’s other son, Ryan, also made an emotional post. “Happy Happy Birthday Dad. We love you so much. Claiming complete restoration and healing in Jesus’ Mighty name. I love you Dad.”