By: Ronnie Nathanielsz

    Laura Elorde, the widow of the late Gabriel "Flash" Elorde marked her 80th birthday on Monday with a surprise dinner arranged by her children and organized by Liza Elorde, wife of Laura's son Johnny Elorde.

    The affair was held at the Grand Ballroom of the Elorde Sports Center and was well-attended by longtime friends of Laura, the daughter of the late "Grand Old Man" of Boxing Lope "Papa" Sarreal who, like "Flash" Elorde, has been enshrined in the Boxing "Hall of Fame."

    Liza Elorde said she had spoken to Filipino ring idol Manny Pacquiao who also celebrated his 29th birthday on Monday in his hometown of General Santos City and that he had wished the matriach of the Elorde family all the best.

    Viva Sports/Manila Standard Today learned that Pacquiao will most probably be named "Fighter of the Year" in the Elorde Annual Awards in March, 2008 and will be elevated to the Elorde "Hall of Fame" since he would have won the honor seven (7) years running.

    Special dance numbers by several of the boxers under the management of sons Gabriel "Bebot" Elorde, Johnny, and Marty Elorde performed for the guests as did the numerous grandchildren some of whom were visiting from the US. Among the Boxing personalities who attended the affair was well-known international referee Ferdinand Estrella and his wife aside.

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