George Mamonluk first broke the sad news to President Cris Castro last Friday. In turn, I received the news from Cris at around 11 PM of that day, while I was watching the progress of the Wimbledon Tennis Tournament.
IMC Treasurer Eddie Ching died in the early morning of June 26, 2009.
The following day, George made the formal announcement to the magic community via bulk email:
“It is with much sadness that I report the passing of Eddie Ching of the Philippines on the early morning of June 26th. Eddie was the Treasurer of the Inner Magic Club (IMC), he was a great supporter, respected and loved by the Magical community.
“The whole Magic community wish to pass on our Condolences to Eddie’s friends and family, and are saddened by the sudden loss to Magic of such a great supporter of the performing art of Magic.
“His remains lie in state at Chapel 1 of the Funeraria Paz’s New Building, Araneta Avenue, Quezon City, Metro Manila, PHILIPPINES.
“Interment will be at the Chinese Cemetery at 9:00 a.m. of July 2, Thursday.
Request readers to pray for the eternal repose of his soul.”
Eddie Ching (for some reason, we always call him Mr. Ching) is a great lover of the magic art. The first time I met him was over a decade ago, at Prince of Wales in Makati. He came with his wife, Florence, and Michael. I think Michael then was in high school or barely out of it. He was the magician of the family. He wanted to join Inner Magic Club, and his parents were there to accompany him.
The Chings are a close-knit family. We, the officers of the Club, incredulously watched the family during Michael’s rigorous 10-week initiation. Mr. and Mrs. Ching were always present at meetings while Michael hurdled IMC’s membership requirements. Afterward, when Michael was accepted to the Club, his parents attended weekly meetings even if Michael was absent. That’s how Eddie and his wife loved magic; that’s how they loved the IMC. They just couldn’t live through a week without attending our meetings.
Over the years, Eddie, with the support of his wife, demonstrated his fervent love of IMC, supporting every activity of the Club. When Chairman Emeritus Boy Alviz would invite close friends to his home for dinner, Eddie and Florence were there to enjoy our company. Always, they would bring some Chinese food and delicacies, which they were proud to share with members who were clueless about Chinese dishes. Every now and then, Eddie would invite the group to his house, threw dinner, even without an occasion to celebrate. The celebration was only so that he could gather magicians in his house in Tondo and spend and evening of fun, laughter, stories and magic with them.
In recent years, when IMC staged huge shows at the Philamlife Theater, Mr. Ching was at his avid self as supporter of the projects. He took care of the printing of the tickets, souvenir programs and other publicity materials. As IMC Treasurer, he also made sure we had the money to get the production going. And most of all, he made sure we had food during our rehearsals that went on till late in the night. He sent fruits, drinks, and Chinese food to refresh the sagging energies of the performers.
Inner Magic Club is fond of Mr. Eddie Ching. The rest of the magic community,whom he had touched with his love for magic, will dearly miss him.