By Zyann Ambrosio, ABS-CBN News
MANILA – Every year, hundreds of devotees are injured during the grand procession of the Black Nazarene. This year is no different, except one devotee died.
As devotees pushed and shoved trying to clamber up the carriage of the icon of the Black Nazarene, 44-year-old Renato Gorion, who was atop the carriage, collapsed.
Gorion is a member of the Hijos del Nazareno — a group of devotees assisting the church during the feast of the Black Nazarene.
With scores of people trying to climb the carriage, it took a while before Gorion was brought down.
He was rushed to a hospital but was declared dead on arrival.
Responders said Gorion may have suffered a heart attack.
Many others needed medical attention as the procession wound through the streets of Manila from Luneta to the Quiapo church.
A number of people fainted and even marshalls were not spared.
Many also suffered cuts on their feet, especially those who walked barefoot.
Even authorities had to make sure they were physically fit to man the huge crowd.
The Philippine Red Cross, in an advisory Friday night, said it more than 1,500 people sought medical help during the event,
A total of 876 had high blood pressure, while 564 had injuries, lacerations, or felt dizzy.
Nineteen were considered major cases. They include difficulty in breathing, seizure, went unconscious, or suffered sprain ankles and possible fractures.
Four were brought to hospitals.