Marlo Mortel works hard for his cancer-stricken mom
“I’D DO anything for her,” declared young actor Marlo Mortel, whose mom was diagnosed last year with stage 3 breast cancer.
Marlo reported that his 46-year-old mom, Merlie Pamintuan, already had mastectomy, or removal of her left breast. She has also finished her chemotherapy and radiation sessions.
“She’s now taking maintenance medication,” said Marlo during the press conference of his latest film, “Haunted Mansion.”
“We don’t know how she got the illness. I guess she ignored whatever pain she had been feeling for a long time. We were shocked when we found out about the diagnosis,” Marlo recalled, adding that this was during the time he was busy with the teleserye, “Be Careful With My Heart.”
The family tried to handle the problem the best way it could. “Initially, we didn’t know how to react to the news, but we knew we had to be strong for mom! The more we showed weakness, the more depressed she got!”
Marlo said he was fortunate to be working at the time, so he was able to finance his mom’s medical needs. He shared, “We aren’t rich, but we’re steadily recovering from that now. I am working harder than ever to provide for my family. I go to work determined and focused, because I think of them!”
Marlo, the family’s breadwinner at 22, added: “Of course I get tired. I always lack sleep, especially now that I’m a regular segment host of ‘Umagang Kay Ganda.’ I always go out of town. I sometimes start my day at 1 a.m. What’s good about this is that I didn’t expect to fall in love with hosting, but I did!”
Marlo joined show biz in 2009 as a contestant of the fifth season of “StarStruck” on GMA 7. He then became a regular performer of the variety show, “Walang Tulugan with the Master Showman” of German Moreno. He became part of several Kapuso TV series, until he transferred to ABS-CBN to join the cast of “Be Careful With My Heart.” There, he worked closely with Janella Salvador, who’s also his partner in “Haunted Mansion.”
Early this year, the young comer was seen in the defunct series, “Oh My G!” He also became part of the boy group Harana, along with Joseph Marco, Bryan Santos and Michael Pangilinan. He is likewise seen as segment host of “Kris TV” and “Salamat Doc.”
“Singing is my first love,” Marlo said. “But acting is my priority now. It paved the way for me to become known to more people.”
For his first big-screen project, “Haunted Mansion,” Marlo said he was grateful to director Jun Robles Lana for his patience. “I sometimes get frustrated with my performance. Direk Jun had a hard time bringing out the best in me, but he persevered because he wanted his actors to shine!”