Mario Dumaual, 64

ABS-CBN’S LONGTIME entertainment  journalist Mario Dumaual died on July 5 due to septic shock while recovering from a heart attack. He was 64.

His passing sent the media community into deep mourning. Best known for telling stories about Philippine celebrities, he has earned the respect of the entertainment and the media industry because of his professionalism for over 40 years.

He studied at the University of the Philippines Los Baños and worked as a writer for the then Ministry of Agriculture after he graduated in 1979. In 1982, after working for a financing and shipping company, the Times Journal hired him as entertainment writer. Dumaual then wrote a column for Malaya and then joined ABS-CBN as entertainment reporter. 

Dumaual opted for early retirement from ABS-CBN in 2015 but accepted on consultancy basis to work as “Star Patroller” until 2020. He then wrote for ABS-CBN Online, becoming the network’s highest paid stringer in 2022 with his output of at least 30 to 40 stories per month. 

Former colleagues in ABS-CBN said Dumaual was “irreplaceable.” TV Patrol anchor Henry Omaga-Diaz said Dumaual elevated and even

revolutionized showbiz reporting. Cherry Cornell, Dumaual’s longtime desk editor, recalled how Dumaual always followed deadlines, submitting work that didn’t need much editing. 

ABS-CBN News chief of reporters Jeff Canoy said Dumaual stayed relevant because he continued to adapt to the changing media landscape. At their last meeting, Canoy said, Dumaual asked him how to use video sharing and the social media platform YouTube.

Earlier this year, the German Moreno Walk of Fame Foundation honored Dumaual with a brass star in the Eastwood City Walk of Fame, while the Society of Philippine Entertainment Editors in 2022 gave him the Joe Quirino Memorial Award.

Dumaual was laid to rest on July 9 at the Loyola Memorial Park in Marikina City. He is survived by his wife Cherie and children Luigi, Miguel, Maxine, William, and Thessa.