Flora Gasser: The comedian was first a radio talent


It was a mild amusement for martial law babies in the mid-1970s to learn that Harry Gasser, the I-mean-business face of Newswatch on the then RPN channel 9, was married to a comedy actor, though her screen name has always been Flora Gasser.

Harry has long been gone and is missed for his flawless delivery of the evening news on TV. But his soul must be glad to welcome Flora, who died on 19 November at age 89.

Her passing was announced on Facebook by her granddaughter Valerie Ocampo. Sarah Aguinaldo, another granddaughter, posted this message: “Rest in God’s arm, Lola Flora. Mahal ka po namin. I (know) magkakasama na kayo ni Mommy and Lolo diyan sa taas. Thank you for being the funny and caring Lola. You will be missed. I’m sorry hindi ako nakaabot magbigay ulit ng pang-granola and milk mo, like the last time. I will always be proud na may lola akong artista, hehe.”

Flora Gasser dedicated over 40 years of her life to the performing arts. She became a household name on TV comedies as well as movies like Annie Batungbakal (1979), Kumander Bawang (1988), Kumusta Ka Aking Mahal? (1993), Praybeyt Benjamin (2011), Moron 5 and the Crying Lady (2012), among others.

But she was first a respected radio voice talent.

In 2014, she portrayed herself in the movie Wagas, about her love story with husband Harry. Director Adolf Alix Jr. referred to Flora as a “pioneer who contributed much to the growth of radio and television as a dubber and voice talent.”

Her last acting stint was in 2020 when she top-billed King Louie Palomo’s short film Nene.

She played the titular role, an 80-year-old retired visual artist trying to finish her final painting before she breathes her last.

Her wake was held from 20 to 22 November at St. Peter’s Chapel in Commonwealth, Quezon City.


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