Family members and various personalities honored Lydia de Vega-Mercado who passed away on Wednesday, August 10.
Her daughter and volleyball player Stephanie Mercado-de Koenigswarter announced on Facebook that her mother died on Wednesday evening at the Makati Medical Center.
De Vega was 57 years old.
“On behalf of our family, it is with absolute grief that I announce the death of my mother, Lydia De Vega this evening, August 10, 2022, at the Makati Medical Center,” the daugher said.
“She fought the very good fight and is now at peace,” she added.
Mercado- de Koenigswarter also asked prayers for her mother.
“Wake details will be announced very soon but for now, I would wholeheartedly appreciate your prayers for the soul of my mother. Maraming salamat po!” she said.
Last month, De Vega’s daughter disclosed on Facebook that her mother has been battling Stage 4 breast cancer.
She sought financial assistance and prayers from the public for De Vega’s health and her medical needs.
Following news of her death, Philippine sports poured in their collective grief for Asia’s Fastest Woman and Sprint Queen on social media.
The Philippine Sports Commission and Sen. Nancy Binay paid tribute to De Vega on Facebook.
Terry Capistrano, president of the Philippine Athletics Track And Field Association, also extended condolences to De Vega’s family.
“On behalf of the men and women of the PATAFA, our deepest condolences and prayers to the family of the great Lydia de Vega. We lost one of our own, one of our best but her spirit will live on in our hearts,” Capistrano said.
Sports personalities also mourned the passing of the celebrated Filipino athlete.
“As a young athlete who had the chance to play alongside her daughter @paneng_mercado, we were very much inspired by tales of our teammate’s mom. Pagpupugay at salamat sa inspirasyon sa aming mga atleta,” Gretchen Ho tweeted.
“Philippines lost a sports legend today. Rest in Power, Lydia De Vega. Asia’s fastest woman in the 80s and 90s,” Dyan Castillejo said.
“She will always be the darling of Philippine sports. Rest in peace Lydia De Vega. You will never be forgotten,” sports commentator Noli Eala wrote.
De Vega’s fans were also saddened by her untimely death.
Her name “Lydia De Vega” trended on Twitter Philippines with over 3,000 tweets on Thursday morning, August 11.
De Vega was dubbed as “Asia’s fastest woman” in the 1980s for her victories in different prestigious sports events.
In her career, De Vega won nine gold medals at the Southeast Asian Games and another six at the Asian Games.
De Vega also represented the Philippines at the Asian Athletics Championships.
Moreover, she was also a two-time Olympian. She competed at the Olympics in 1984 and in 1988.
In 1994, De Vega retired at 30 years old.