'Glee' singer Charice's dad killed in Philippines

Associated Press
In this Sept. 7, 2010 file photo, Charice, a cast member in "Glee," arrives at the television show's second season premiere in Los Angeles.  Philippine police say the estranged father of singer Charice Pempengco of the hit TV show "Glee" has been stabbed to death in her hometown just south of Manila. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello, File)
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In this Sept. 7, 2010 file photo, Charice, a cast member in "Glee," arrives at the television show's …

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The estranged father of singer Charice Pempengco of the hit TV show "Glee" was stabbed to death in her hometown in the Philippines, causing the teen star to fly home and cancel the rest of her tour dates.

In a statement, Charice said the killing was a "terrible tragedy." She thanked fans for their support.

Her father, 40-year-old construction worker Ricky Pempengco, was at a small grocery store in San Pedro township south of Manila late Monday when he brushed against a drunk man who became angry and stabbed him with an ice pick in the chest and back, according to the Laguna province police chief, Senior Supt. Gilbert Cruz.

A manhunt has been launched for the suspect. Cruz said the killing appeared random.

Charice had long been estranged from her father. Local media reported that Charice's mother left him when Charice and her younger brother were small children.

In a Twitter post Tuesday, Charice said she once had a "really great relationship" with her father before their family troubles began.

"I loved him and I will still love him," she wrote. "He's still my Dad after all."

The 19-year-old songstress, born Charmaine Clarice Relucio Pempengco, is widely known throughout Asia from concerts and TV talent shows in the Philippines and South Korea.

In an interview with The Associated Press in 2010, Charice talked about the possibility of reconnecting with her father: "When he left us, I was 3 years old, and it's been 15 years now and I haven't seen or heard from him, but still, I wanna thank him because he's my dad, and I want to thank him for everything that he did, even if it's just a short time.

"But all the credit I want to give to my mom because she stayed for us for however many years."

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