Sen. Ninoy Aquino wrote the following letter to President Cory hours before he was gunned down on Aug. 21, 1983.
My Dearest Cory,
In a few hours I shall be embarking on an uncertain fate, which may well be the end of a long struggle. I slept well last night for the first time since I left Boston – maybe because I’m just plain tired or I’m really at peace with myself. I want to tell you many things but time is running out and I do not have any machine. After a few more paragraphs, my penmanship will be illegible.
All the things I want to tell you may be capsulized in one line – I love you! You’ve stood by me in my most trying moments and there were times I was very hard on you. But if anyone will ever understand me, it is you, and I know you will always find it in your heart to forgive – and unfair and ironic as it is – it is because of this thought and belief that I often took you for granted.
Early on I knew I was not meant to make money – so I won’t be able to leave anything to the children. I did what I thought I could do best, which is public service, and I hope our people in time will appreciate my sacrifices. This would be my legacy to the children. I may not bequeath them material wealth but I leave them a tradition which can be priceless.
I realize I’ve been very stingy with praise and appreciation for all your efforts – but though unsaid – you know that as far I’m concerned, you are the best. That’s why we’ve lasted this long. There will only be one thing in the world I will never accept — that you love me more than I love you –because my love for you though unarticulated will never be equaled.
If all goes well I should be back in my cell before sundown. Should I be detained do not rush to get home. Take your time and enjoy a side trip to Europe with the girls.
I’ll try to call you tonight if the authorities will allow me. Otherwise just remember me in your dreams.
P.S. I offered a special rosary for Papa and I asked for his intercession. You know he never failed me. (Ninoy was referring to Cory’s late father, Jose Cojuangco, who died on Aug. 21, 1976)