Noc News

Philippines’ Rio Olympian passes away, aged 23

Date : 05 Sep 2018

Manila, Philippines, September 5, 2018: Just as the Philippines was celebrating four gold medals at a successful 18th Asian Games, tragedy has struck the sports community.

Ian “Yanyan” Lariba, who represented the Philippines in table tennis at the Rio Olympic Games in 2016, passed away on Sunday evening after losing a year-long battle with leukemia. She was 23.

A wake was held for two days at St. Peter Memorial Chapel Commonwealth, before she was taken to her home town of Cagayan de Oro on Wednesday for her funeral.

Lariba represented De La Salle University in the UAAP (University Athletic Association of the Philippines) where she went undefeated in her five-year collegiate career.

Prior to her death, Lariba, who has been battling leukemia since last year, was admitted to St. Luke's Bonifacio Global City after suffering a relapse.

She was named Most Valuable Player in Seasons 75, 77 and 78 and was feted as UAAP Athlete of the Year in Seasons 77 and 78.

Her mother Imelda said that Yanyan had spent the last few months of her life encouraging children with cancer not to be discouraged or depressed and to keep fighting.

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