It was not too long ago that the Filipino people were saying, “We win as one!” For the 30th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, the slogan truly encompassed the spirit of the Filipino athletes and the general population cheering them on. It now seems almost a lifetime ago as our country is in the grip of the current Covid-19 crisis, but one young SEA Games athlete is going on to show that in our fight against the pandemic the Filipino will win as one.

LR Lancero, 24, is part of the national ice hockey team. Yes, ice hockey in the Philippines, so seemingly unconventional that a Cool Runnings-type movie for them should be in the works. Unlike the unfortunate Jamaican bobsledding team in the 1993 film, LR and his team have proved that unconventional is nowhere close to unable.

In 2017, the national team brought home the gold medal in the SEA Games’s inaugural ice hockey tournament. In 2019, the team proudly won bronze.

While athletic training is a full-time commitment, unfortunately, the health crisis has put a hold on any intense, group training for the team. In an interview with Manila Bulletin Lifestyle, LR recounts that for the most part of the quarantine he has dutifully stayed home, trying his best to enjoy time with his family, while attempting to maintain their fitness through home workouts. But he knew that there was more he could offer to his fellow Filipinos.

“I have always wanted to represent the Philippines, not just through sports but in ways that help and serve our society,” says LR. “I joined the reserve force mainly because I wanted to contribute as much as possible to our beloved country.”

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If you want change in our country, act on it. Wag puro reklamo lang alam gawin. A little help can honestly make a change.

A post shared by LR Lancero (@lr_lancero) on

As a fresh graduate of the Basic Citizens Military Training (BCMT), LR has participated in activities relating to civil military operations. While there are only so many sporting competitions in a year that he could proudly wear the national team’s uniform, he found a general calling to represent the country in more ways than one, wearing another type of uniform that allowed him to still serve country and countrymen.

In the middle of the health crisis, LR knew that he would be part of relief operations, unlike anything he had been part of before.

“This kind of pandemic should not be taken lightly,” he says. “All we have to do is work together and prevent the crisis [from spreading].”

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To our frontliners at Medical Center Imus (MCI hospital) A simple thank you from me and my family. Keep fighting! #frontliners

A post shared by LR Lancero (@lr_lancero) on

Since the middle of April, LR has repacked relief goods to distribute to families under the then enhanced community quarantine. In one Instagram post, he shows himself and the other members of his unit packing relief goods in the Naval Reserve Center to be distributed to over 2,500 beneficiary families in Laguna. In another, he and his unit help deliver much-needed food supplies to frontiners.


“I would just like to applaud each [and] every one of our frontliners who are doing their best to fight off this pandemic even though [there] is such a high risk,” LR adds. “I would also like to tell everyone to be in their homes as much as possible and keep safe. Once this crisis is done, we will rise stronger than ever.”

That cheer and belief we Filipinos were saying during the SEA Games is something we should take to heart in everything we face as a nation. So let us say it just one more time, for those in the back to hear: We win as one!

Source: Manila Bulletin (