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A SYMBOL of stability during tumultuous times.

This was how President Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr. described former President Fidel V. Ramos, as he attended the latter’s wake at the Heritage Memorial Park in Taguig on Thursday.

Marcos said Ramos’s ascent to the presidency in 1992, after serving as Armed Forces chief of staff and then defense secretary to President Corazon Aquino, stabilized the country following the “tumult” of the 1986 Edsa uprising.

The bloodless revolt led to the ouster of Marcos’s father, the late strongman and former President Ferdinand E. Marcos Sr. and swept Mrs. Aquino into power.

“When he [Ramos] came into the presidency, he brought calm and he brought stability to our country. And for that, we will always be grateful to him and for all his service all throughout his life—as a soldier and as a public servant,” Marcos said in an ambush interview with reporters at the Heritage Memorial Park.

Family loss

Marcos also personally lamented the passing of Ramos, who was also fondly called “Steady Eddie,” who was the President’s distant uncle.

“You also must remember that we are related with FVR and so it is also a family—it is also part of our—it is also a family event, the loss of FVR,” Marcos said.

Marcos condoled with former first lady Amelita “Ming” M. Ramos during the wake.

During the wake, Marcos was accompanied by Executive Secretary Victor D. Rodriguez, House Speaker Martin G. Romualdez, and Special Assistant to the President Anton F. Lagdameo Jr.

The former first lady thanked those who attended the wake to honor the memory of her late husband, whose has been extoled for his services to the nation as a soldier, patriot, and as a president who steered the country through the Asian crisis and championed peace with insurgents.

“Thank you very much for coming. I realized we have so many friends. He [Ramos] worked hard. We also tried to work hard, and now he deserves the rest that he needs,” Mrs. Ramos said.

In recognition of the public service of Ramos, Marcos earlier issued Proclamation No. 33 declaring a 10-day national mourning.

Malacañang said a state funeral with full military honors for Ramos would be held on August 9.