MANILA—Mildred Ortega, a popular singer-actress during the late 60s to 70s died due to stroke complications on April 8. She was 68 years old.
According to her son Mike on his birthday few days before Holy Week, “My birthday wasn’t so happy because my mom had a stroke two Sundays ago and she’s still in ICU. Please include her in your prayers.
“We can’t visit her. Only one assigned person is allowed to be with her… and it’s the personal nurse… once you go in, you can’t leave or exchange places, so it’s the nurse who’s there.
“It’s hard on my dad because he can’t be with her and also he can’t go out because of Covid restrictions on people his age.”
Mildred’s husband retired General Mitch Templo shared that the actress died after being comatose for 27 days, at 1:38 a.m. yesterday.
She was cremated Friday dawn at Funeraria Paz in Quezon City. Pending final funeral arrangements, Gen. Templo said Mildred’s remains will be at their home in Acropolis, Quezon City.
During the 70s, Mildred shared the limelight with the popularity of other teen stars like Nora Aunor, Vilma Santos, Tirso Cruz III, Hilda Koronel among many other contemporaries.
Some of Mildred’s films were Mekeni’s Gold(1969),Halina Neneng ko(1969),Teenage Escapades! with Nora Aunor(1969),My Darling Eddie(1969),The Jukebox King(1969),and Santiago! With Fernando Poe Jr. (1970).
Other films she did were: Haydee (1970), Happy Hippie Holiday (1970), Signos Trece (1971), Luha sa Bawa’t Awit (1971), Unang Tibok ng Puso (1972), Dyesebel (1973), at Supergirl (1973).
Apart from acting, she became a recording star and did albums for Villar Records and other music companies.
In mid-70s, Mildred got married and devoted her life as the wife of a military official. She later hosted the charity program “Kapwa Ko, Mahal Ko” for many years, injecting her singing talent to help raise funds for the underprivileged. She was also a member of the Board of Trustees of Aliw Awards Foundation.
The 82-year old husband Gen. Templo told Mario Dumaual of ABS CBN that he is still at a loss at Mildred’s passing as he shared his heartbreaking loss.
“I am still stunned. Things happened so fast and I was not even able to see her to say goodbye,” he said as he recalled the evening of March 14 when he discovered his wife at their comfort room while they were preparing for dinner.
“Nakalugmok na siya and breathing heavily. I rushed her to the hospital, the next day she had brain surgery. She was comatose after that until she expired.”
The military officer also narrated how Mildred overcame a bad fall in 2019 where she sustained a hipbone. “Nilagyan siya ng metal brace, and you know what a strong willed woman she is. After a few weeks, she was able to walk,” he said.
The only downside, he disclosed, was she had indications she had a mild stroke before the brace procedure.
Mildred also left behind her two sons, John and lawyer and former news host Mike Templo and three grandchildren.
“Mildred was a very simple woman and she was always with me. Wala din kaming kasama talaga sa bahay. Kami lang. Sabi niya, kaya natin ‘to!” her husband said, also citing Ortega’s unfading beauty.
“All my life I never saw her go to a parlor. She was the one who did her own makeup. Napakabait niya, I am going to miss her terribly!”
Mildred’s nephew Michael Ramirez shared some throwback photos of the actress.
Michael posted, “Rest in peace, Aunt Mildred. We will always pray for you. God bless you.” (ECD/MTVN)