Mr. Gay World 2017 opens up about brother

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 18) — The first Filipino to win the Mr. Gay World title shared on Thursday the story that might have sealed his crown.

John Raspado shared that during his personal interview, he was asked about discrimination against the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in the Philippines.

"Yung kuya ko kasi, nabanggit ko, he [had] a stroke. Now he's a person with disability," Raspado shared on CNN Philippines' The Source. "Dati kasi yung kuya ko yung nag-aalaga sa akin, nagpo-protect sa akin when people bullied me. Ngayon, parang siya na yung nadi-discriminate."

[Translation: I mentioned my brother. He [had] a stroke. Now he's a person with disability. Before, he would be the one who looked out for me and protected me when people bullied me. Now, he is the one who is discriminated.]

The 36-year-old Baguio native recounted that he became emotional while sharing the story during his interview.

"Siguro doon ko sila naantig, kasi [Maybe that is how I touched them, because] everything was very heartfelt," he added.

Raspado said that his brother still resides in Baguio.

Raspado also bagged awards for the best in swimwear, best in formal wear, and the online vote. However, he said the heaviest criterion was his stake in the personal interview.

The first Mr. Gay World pageant was held in 2009, and was founded "to show the world that being gay encompasses a broad spectrum," according to the pageant website. Among the other challenges include tasks in sports, fashion, swimwear, and even, as Raspado recounts, a written exam.

Raspado is set to return to Madrid for the World Pride festival in June. He is also helping search for new delegates for the next Mr. Gay World Philippines pageant, as well as advocating for HIV awareness.

Raspado also expressed his interest in going into the entertainment industry.

"I want to enter show business. What's important as being gay is being visible," said Raspado. "That's the very first step to being accepted in this community."