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¿Paano gumauá ng pastillas? Simple lang…

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They say that you’re not a Filipino if you have not tried pastillas de leche, the milk-based candy that has captured the sweet tooth of our countrymen from Luzón in the north all the way down to Mindanáo. It is a favorite pasalubong among travelers and can also be served either as dessert or merienda. Pastillas de leche, or simply pastillas, originated from San Miguel de Mayumò in Bulacán and became widespread throughout Filipinas, particularly in Cagayán and Masbate.

A few months ago, the word pastillas gained some notoriety when ABS-CBN, lagging behind its noontime rival‘s AlDub Phenomenon, chose to exploit a pretty lass whose whimsical YouTube video made the rounds for a couple of weeks, in the hopes of winning the ratings war. In that video, the pretty but huffy sounding lass cleverly alluded to how she was cheated on by her ex-boyfriend as she describes the pastillas making process in sarcastic fashion. She was then recruited by the media giant’s noontime variety show, earning the nickname “Pastillas Girl”, and turned into a virtual tramp in a desperate attempt to beat the rival program.

ABS-CBN lost the ratings war (and is still losing it) while Pastillas Girl has since twerked her way to show business, but to the detriment of that beloved Filipino milk candy she herself had exploited and made fun of out of spite. Since then, any mention of pastillas almost always reminds everyone of ABS-CBN’s frankenstein vamp.


How is pastillas made? Easy. Just click here to watch La Familia Viajera‘s brief “instructional video”. Then click here for the rest of the photos.

However, the coarse-mouthed, twerking vamp (or at least her YouTube video) is not that popular in faraway Abra de Ilog, Mindoro Occidental, my wife’s idyllic hometown. During a recent vacation early this month, I asked one of her teenage cousins, John-John, if he knows anything about the “Pastillas Girl Phenomenon”; he answered in the negative. Thankfully, pastillas in those parts is still spotless.

And nostalgic.

Pastillas making was introduced to the tiny Población (town proper) of Abra de Ilog by my wife‘s late grandmother, Zenaida del Mundo de Atienza, most probably after the last war. Ináy Zenaida’s roots are from Lemery, Batangas; Tito Raf, John-John’s father, believes that she got the recipe from there. While it can be argued that Abra de Ilog’s pastillas making did not reach cottage-industry levels, it is interesting to note that pastillas is not a delicacy in Lemery. The milk candy was also moderately popular during my wife’s childhood days as it was produced in many homes in the Población and enjoyed by practically all its children (Abra de Ilog’s town proper is so small one can scout all its streets in just half an hour).

Today, this milk candy is no longer as popular as before and is produced only in the home of Mrs. Priscilla Leído who also learned its production from Inay Zenaida. But the old lady and her household members produce this pastillas only when they receive orders.


My wife with Aling Priscilla at the latter’s home.

There are only two ingredients: carabao’s milk and sugar, but the flavor is surprisingly heavenly (in other parts of the country, processed or cow’s milk is a common ingredient). There is another similar pastillas in nearby Paluán, but the makers there add flour. This means that the pastillas of Yeyette’s grandmother can be considered as endemic to Abra de Ilog, indigenized there by time and tradition (my family reverently calls it pastillas de carabáo for obvious reasons).

Many old towns in our country like to take pride of something native to them, something different that only they can lay claim too (even at a communal level, our country’s many towns are looking for their own separate identities, totally independent from others). Save for its breathtaking treasure trove of environmental wonders, Abra de Ilog doesn’t have much to offer. To an adventurous outsider hungry for novel discoveries, the place has no unique traditions or festivals that one can enjoy observing, no endearing cuisine to sink in one’s teeth, no folk music to enjoy listening to, or any other symbolic cultural trappings to research on. The place has only a handful of ancestral homes to explore, and its old church doesn’t even look that old or Baroque, unfit for selfie sessions. And whatever culture the town has to offer is but indigenous: its Mañguián (or more accurately, Iraya) people. But even they are now embracing modernity, bit by bit turning their backs away from who they really are.

Abra de Ilog’s local government now has this rare chance of preserving, conserving, and even promoting something that be considered as cultural. The ball —or should I say the pastillas— is in their hands.

Simplicity, honesty, and Mayor Vicente del Mundo

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Election day is just around the corner. So I might as well blog about this.

My wife Yeyette had a public servant for a great grandfather. He was Don Vicente del Mundo, former mayor of Abra de Ilog, Mindoro Occidental.


Mayor del Mundo (1901-1975) traces his roots to Lemery, Batangas. He was married to Marieta Calivara. They had several children; Yeyette’s maternal grandmother, Inay Zenaida (the mother of my mother-in-law), was the second eldest. As mayor of postwar Abra de Ilog, it was said that he had worked for the moral and economic recovery of his town mates from the damages brought by World War II. He administered Abra de Ilog twice: from 1942 to 1947, and then from 1960 to 1963, a total of eight years.

Few people know that, in 1960, Mayor del Mundo worked for the elevation of Sitio Sablay Uway to the status of a barrio (now called barangay) as petitioned by its residents. This sitio south of the town proper had become populous anyway, with parts of a nearby forest cleared to give way to a growing community. When the municipal council approved the petition, Mayor del Mundo immediately submitted it to the provincial board.  Upon its approval by higher authorities, the sitio leaders proposed that Mayor del Mundo’s first name be made as the official name of their newly proclaimed barrio as a show of gratitude. But since it was a Filipino custom during that time to assign names of saints to newly established places, they ingeniously added San (saint) to Mayor del Mundo’s first name. The barrio was thus named after him but was entrusted under the patronage of San Vicente Ferrer of Spain. That is why Barrio San Vicente, although named after Mayor del Mundo, celebrates its fiesta every April 5th, the Spanish saint’s feast day.

When my wife first brought me to his great grandfather’s house more than a decade ago (my first time in Abra de Ilog), I was utterly surprised to find it as nothing more than a modest abode. I was half expecting to see a huge bahay na bató. What I found was a small, postwar two-story house. The first floor had a low ceiling and had tree trunks for posts. I even remember seeing some of its walls in cement finish. I muttered under my breath, “This was where the mayor had lived?” I know of one mayor who, before becoming a politician, lived in a small house made of light materials. After his term, that house of his became a large bungalow.


La Familia Viajera (with family friend Ate Cora and Yeyette’s teenage cousin John-John) in front of Casa del Mundo. Click here for more photos of our visit last April 3rd.

The del Mundo house has since been renovated. The only thing original in it is its simplicity.

Yeyette doesn’t know much about his great grandfather; he had died a year before she was born (interestingly, the date of his passing is also our youngest daughter’s birth date). But if there’s one thing I’m sure about him, it’s this: he was not corrupt. He had lived as a just and honest public servant. This I remarked to Yeyette a few years ago. Puzzled, she asked me how I knew about it.

Simple: her family’s not rich.

Mayor del Mundo reminds me of Luis Rodríguez Varela (1768-1826), the nationalist creole poet who was the first to call himself a Filipino. He had been the corregidor (district leader) and capitán of Tondo. But when he passed away, it was discovered that he was penniless, with no hacienda to leave to his children. This, considering the fact that he had many opportunities to enrich himself in office.

Who among our current crop of not-so-rich political candidates will end up as honest public servants like Mayor del Mundo and Capitán Rodríguez?

Easter 2016

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Today we commemorate the most important day in all of Christendom…


Happy Easter!

PiliQUEla: the first Quezon Province Film Festival!

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It’s coming next weekend, folks! See you there!


Captain Remo: The Young Hero (Anatomy of Abelardo Remoquillo, the pride of San Pedro Tunasán, La Laguna)

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Anatomy of Abelardo Remoquillo, the pride of San Pedro Tunasán, La Laguna

¿Dónde está la juventud que ha de consagrar sus rosadas horas, sus ilusiones y entusiasmo al bien de su patria?
—José Rizal—


Monument dedicated to Abelardo “Captain Remo” Remoquillo. He died for his country fighting the Japanese invaders when he was only 22 years old. What were you doing when you were his age?

On 8 December 1941, nine hours after the fall of Pearl Harbor, the Commonwealth of the Philippines was attacked by the Imperial Japanese Army (IJA). The Filipinos, confident as they were, were caught in surprise at the swift entry of Japanese troops in many parts of the country. Despite the practice brownouts that were done in preparation for an impending attack, many of them were still caught in shock at the brazen display of Japanese aggression towards what was then deemed unconquerable — the United States Army Forces in the Far East (USAFFE).

It is fortunate that the whole country did not suffer the wrath of Japanese aggression. As can be gleaned throughout World History, wars were usually fought in capital cities and other major areas. In the old town of San Pedro Tunasán in the province of La Laguna, it was relatively peaceful throughout the three years of Japanese occupation. Even during that one bloody month in 1945 (February 3 to March 3) when both Japanese and US artillery flattened Intramuros into rubble, San Pedro Tunasán was spared despite the scary fact that it stood only 29 kilometers away from the country’s capital.

One might think it odd why a promising young man from San Pedro Tunasán joined the painful resistance against the Japanese invaders. As a bright student taking up law, Abelardo Remoquillo had an exciting life ahead of him. He could have declined the conscription (such cases happen in real life), made excuses, or simply escaped with his family away from the frightening violence of war. But he didn’t. And when his military commanders sent him and other young men home because resisting the Japanese offensive was already hopeless, he took a different road: he joined the guerrillas instead, much to the puzzlement and surprise of those who had been observing his life, a life that was, from childhood, reared in a loving, peaceful home. From that daring decision of his alone to continue taking up arms against the Japanese can we trace the first few glints of heroism. We can, furthermore, assess the assertiveness of education into the lives of the studentry during those times. It must be emphasized that Abeling did not take up military science as a college course. His military training was merely a subject, a school requirement. Nevertheless, when the country needed its young men to take up arms against foreign invasion, those conscripted were already geared up for battle even without formal training in a bona fide military school such as the Philippine Military Academy (PMA).

Abeling, as how he was called by those who knew him personally, was a true blue San Pedrense. He first saw the light of day on 27 December 1922, at a time when the country was occupied by the United States of America, during the unpopular regime of Governor General Leonard Wood. He was the eldest in a brood of ten (eight boys, two girls). His father, José Remoquillo, was then the municipal treasurer (agent-collector) while his mother, Valeriana Hermosilla, was a full-time housewife who oversaw the upbringing of all their children. The Remoquillo brood were as follows (from eldest to youngest): Abelardo, Vicente, Felicitas, Jaime, Benjamín, Angustia, Manolo, Galileo, Frolín, and José. As was the custom during those days, all the children were born through a comadrona (midwife).


The Remoquillo family. Standing (L-R): José, Jr., Frolín, Galileo, Manolo, Benjamín, Jaime, Vicente. Seated (L-R): Felicitas, Valeriana, José, Sr., and Angustia. Photo taken sometime between the late 1960s to early 1970s (photo credit: Jimmy Remoquillo, son of Jaime).

The San Pedro Tunasán of young Abeling’s time was still rustic: farmlands were a familiar scene while thick pockets of forests were aplenty especially in the upland areas; the San Isidro River was still deep, wide, and crystalline, with plenty of fish to catch. The roads were unpaved. There was no electricity yet. Commercial, administrative, and socio-religious activities were concentrated mainly at the población or town center. The rest of the barangays, then known as barrios, were still distinguishably detached from the matrix, and many of them were known for their characteristic identities: Cuyab for its duck-raising industry, San Roque for its healthy farm produce and fresh catch from Laguna de Bay, and San Vicente for its fragrant sampaguita farms. Flame trees were aplenty especially on the road that connects San Pedro Tunasán to Muntinlupà, beautifully littering the highway with orange-yellow colored flowers every summer. The town was already witnessing the beginnings of the Santo Sepulcro cult in Landayan, while jazz music was capturing the youth’s interest. The mayor back then was Tiburcio Morando while the provincial governor was revolutionary veteran Juan Cailles (hero of the Battle of Mabitac). And although the town’s name had been shortened to simply San Pedro on 28 February 1914 (via Republic Act 2390 of the third Philippine Legislature), or eight years before Abeling was born, the townsfolk didn’t care. They still called their home by its original nomenclature: San Pedro Tunasán, its name since 1725.

It was in Barrio San Vicente where a young Abeling spent his growing up years. The Remoquillo residence was a simple house made up of light materials (mostly bamboo), facing the railway near the boundary of San Vicente and the town proper (during those days, the town’s old public cemetery was just a few meters away from the Remoquillo home in what is now known as Sitio Laguerta near the banks of the San Isidro). It was there along the rail tracks of the Manila Railroad Company, still enveloped in sampaguita shrubs and greenery, where the Remoquillo siblings along with their playmates frolicked about. They used to see railway workers during playtime, among them Rodolfo Catáquiz, then an employ of legislator and sugar baron José Yulo. Catáquiz later on became one of the architects of the town’s economic progress. He sired Calixto Catáquiz, the father of San Pedro’s cityhood in 2013.

The Remoquillo household grew up tightly knit. Both parents were very health conscious, especially the father. However, they resorted to naturopathy (alternative medicine), as was usually the practice of many provincial folk then till now. Whenever the children fell ill, the parents made them drink castor oil (Ricinus communis), fish oil, or am (rice milk). Somehow, those proved to be effective because the children rarely visited a doctor. Both mother and father did the laundry for the family, and this was done at the San Isidro River. Laundry time at the river was considered as an event of sorts by the townsfolk because it was bonding time for them; the elders exchanged gossips and stories during laundry while the children picnicked and swam.

The Remoquillo patriarch was also very much into sports, teaching his two eldest sons self-defense, particularly boxing, at an early age — from such activity Abeling may have gotten his courageousness and discipline. Every Sunday, the whole family trooped to the church of San Pedro Apóstol to attend Mass. The church was just less than three minutes away from their home by foot.

From both parents the Remoquillo brood learned the values of honesty, valor, and the importance of protecting the Remoquillo name. Among the boys, chivalry played an important part; the father taught the boys never to maltreat women. They were also taught to love one another. If a sibling is in need of help, any kind of help, the rest of the brood should always be there for him or her no matter what, and that they should expect nothing in return.


Captain Remo’s only extant photograph (provided by Jimmy Remoquillo, son of Jaime).

Abeling grew up to be a handsome young man. His wide brow, thick eyebrows, well-defined nose, and steady mouth made some people say that he had a bit of resemblance to then Senator Manuel L. Quezon who later became the first president of the Commonwealth of the Philippines in 1935. His good built matched his good looks. But the stern look on his eyes betrayed a demeanor that suggests a serious outlook in life. He was popular among friends and was earlier seen to have qualities of leadership and responsibility. During his teenage years, he volunteered as a ronda (watchman) in his barrio, drinking salabat (ginger ale) to keep awake during rounds.

Abeling studied in San Pedro Central Elementary School where he was recognized as a “Special Boy Scout.” Later on, he enrolled and graduated in Arellano High School in Manila. Afterwards, he entered the University of the Philippines (UP) and took up law. It was in UP where he became a model student and was given given numerous awards and recognition during his stint as a Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) cadet.

While Abeling seemed to have led a normal life during his youth, events surrounding his early days on earth can already be deemed fortuitous. For one, he shares the same birthdate as the Japanese aircraft carrier Hōshō (Japanese for “phoenix in flight”) which had a minor participation in the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, the catalyst of the Pacific War whose ramifications eventually took his life. He was also baptized by Fr. Telesforo José, the elderly parish priest of San Pedro Tunasán who, in his youth, was accused by former Spanish Governor-General Eulogio Despujol of collecting funds for La Solidaridad, the Masonic lodge founded by Filipino liberals whose newspaper was edited by well-known propagandistas Graciano López Jaena and Marcelo H. del Pilar.

But Abeling’s dream of becoming a lawyer was put to a halt with the outbreak of World War II. Immediately after the shocking Pearl Harbor debacle, Japan turned its guns on the Commonwealth of the Philippines, attacking all military installations in almost calculated precision. They first bombed Camp John Hay in Baguio City a few hours after attacking Pearl Harbor, then Clark Air Base in Ángeles, Pampanga. The next day (9 December 1941), Nichols Field in Parañaque/Pásay was attacked. Many other parts of the archipelago fell one by one.

It was undoubtedly the darkest Christmas Season in our country’s history.

New Year’s Day of 1942 would prove to be no reason for celebration as well for the Imperial Japanese Army reached San Pedro Tunasán. No armed conflict was reported. A local puppet government called the Support Company of People’s Peace was immediately established. Although not much physical violence happened during the three years of enemy occupation, the town nevertheless suffered difficulty in food distribution because the Japanese forcibly purchased the people’s agricultural produce at their dictated price.

Abeling was one of those drafted in the military to join the fight against the invaders. The first mission given to him and his group was to block the entry of the enemy in the province of Tayabas (now Quezon). The plan did not materialize when their unit’s Military High Command decided to withdraw due to an extremely strong enemy force. The commanders eventually ordered their retreat and disbandment, telling them to go home to their families instead.

Further demoralization followed when President Manuel Quezon, the country’s highest elected official, and General Douglas MacArthur, Field Marshal of the Commonwealth Army, escaped the country, leaving the Filipino people to fend for themselves against the ruthless IJA.

With the disbandment of the ROTC cadets, Abeling had no more group to turn to. He could have easily avoided further harm by simply going home, as was advised to him and his fellow young cadets. The battle at Bataán and Corregidor was raging, but to the rest of the world, it wasn’t a battle. It was an unstoppable, one-sided massacre. The final spasm was right around the corner, and many military observers were sure of it. But fueled, perhaps, by youth’s adventurous spirit, Abeling’s zeal towards the fight against the Japanese invaders didn’t falter.

On April 9 and May 6, Bataán and Corregidor fell respectively to the IJA. More than a thousand Filipino and US soldiers perished while hundreds of thousands more were captured. The downfall of these last two bastions of Filipino defense officially signified the end of Filipino resistance against Japanese invasion. Because of this, many Filipino fighters lost heart in the fight against the IJA. The outlook was bleak. The country was in peril, and not even its highest leaders could do very little about it. But Abeling and a few young Filipinos who were still left in the open didn’t feel the same way. His passion brought him to as far as Malabón and Morong, Rizal to join other recalcitrants who, like him, felt an impulse to resume the fight against the Japanese through guerrilla warfare. He joined the Hunters ROTC under the leadership of Colonel Eleuterio “Terry” Adevoso (PMA Class of 1944).

Organized by Adevoso and Miguel Ver (PMA Class of 1943) as early as 15 January 1942, the Hunters ROTC should not be considered as a ragtag crew of angry guerrillas. Unlike the Hukbong Bayan Laban sa mga Hapones (Hukbalahap) which was composed mainly of Communist-leaning agrarian peasants from Central Luzón, the Hunters ROTC was the first purely volunteer anti-Japanese force in the country. They operated mainly from within the unforgiving forests of the Sierra Madre mountain range. By recruiting solely from PMA and ROTC cadets into its officer corps, the group was able to draw only the best in military leadership and training. They didn’t have to start from scratch when it came to training new recruits. And since Abeling had ample ROTC training when he was still in UP, it can be easily surmised that he encountered less difficulty during his early days as a Hunter. This, of course, can be gleaned by his eventual promotion to the rank of captain later on.

Throughout the Japanese occupation, the Hunters ROTC eventually evolved into a well-trained, highly disciplined military organization, doing hit and run operations against the IJA in various parts of Luzón. One of Abeling’s assignments was to conduct perilous surveillance activities on the enemy, particularly as a prison guard inside the Japanese-controlled New Bilíbid Prison in Muntinlupà.

The name Abelardo Remoquillo became well-known to the IJA forces in Southern Luzón when, on 24 June 1944, he actively participated in a daredevil rescue of prisoners of war (POW) who were incarcerated inside the New Bilíbid Prison. The following political and military prisoners were rescued: Enrique Albert, León Pabico, Roger Moskaira, Ernesto Bascón, Silvestre Pascual, José Carungcong, Gustavo Inglés (he was to lead Filipino troops eight months later in the successful raid of Los Baños), Jimmy Mauricio, Felixberto Damián, and Raymundo Gozon. They were also able to get a huge number of weapons from the Bureau of Prisons as they fled towards the provinces of Cavite and Rizal. Since then, Abeling was branded by an enraged IJA as San Pedro Tunasán’s “most wanted resident”. He was only 21.

Captain Remo also featured prominently in the famous liberation of Allied prisoners who were held in a camp in Los Baños. It was a joint effort between Filipino guerrillas and the US Allied forces. On the night of 22 February 1945 (while Intramuros and the rest of Manila were being razed to the ground by both Yank and Jap), Filipino guerrillas composed of Hunters ROTC, Hukbalahap, and President Quezon’s Own Guerrillas surreptitiously convened with some US troops along the banks of Laguna de Bay in Barrio San Antonio, Bay. It was there where they finalized their plans of attacking a Japanese camp in Los Baños in order to free thousands of Allied civilian and military internees who have been incarcerated there for the past two or three years. The group of Filipinos coming from Bay were led by Lt. José “Dondoy” del Rosario and Captain Remo (under the auspices of Inglés). The plan was to march towards the Los Baños camp on foot and to reach the gates of the camp at the crack of dawn. There they would have to wait for the air raid as a signal for them to launch their ground attack.

A few minutes before seven in the morning, several fighter aircrafts broke from the clouds, surprising the Japanese troops who were still doing their morning rituals. In an instant, the sleepless and weary guerrillas who were hiding in bushes and trees suddenly raced towards the camp — the battle was on! In the midst of the firefight, Captain Remo’s voice was heard rallying his men to continue marching on.

The battle was short but intense. Around 80 IJA troops were killed, and only five perished on the side of the Allies (three US soldiers, two Filipinos). The rest of the IJA troops who were not captured were sent fleeing in panic. The successful raid of this Japanese internment camp in Los Baños, resulting in the liberation of 2,147 POWs, is said to be one of the most successful rescue operations in modern military history.

With the kind of life that Abeling had led, a fateful death was only a matter of time. But Abeling himself didn’t foresee a hero’s death. In fact, and inspite of his dangerous situation, he never planned on dying at all. For him, he was merely fulfilling a mission; he was still raring to come home. But it was Fate that willed his untimely death. His first and last letter to his father, written in matter-of-factly English, reveals this:

Pila, Laguna

March 1, 1945

Dear Father,

Please receive two hundred tablets of sulpatiazole (sic) from Lt. (José) del Rosario. This medicine is part of our loot from the Los Baños Interment Camp.

Itay, please secure some chicos for him so he could take it to Manila for his mother. This fellow is a very good friend of mine and he has helped me all the days in my stay here in Pila so it is time for me to pay him back thru you. Extend to him all the facilities — accommodations and food. The medicine he is giving you is from him — he gave it to me.

Itay, tell Inay and others that I am well and fine here — so do not worry about me. I didn’t even get a scratch. I hope to go home when Calamba and Los Baños are completely liberated then these places will be cleared of Japanese. Somehow I have to stay here, our work is still unfinished.

So long and sweet kisses to everybody there.

Your son,


I am also sending you some of my clothes. Two sharkskin pant (sic), one poloshirt (sic) and two camesetas (sic) and also one woolen jacket.

There was no hint of sadness. There was simply the compulsion for him to continue performing his duty to his Motherland. Somehow, he had to stay.

It was unfortunate that Captain Remo’s young life was cut short. Looking back at his exploits and daring accomplishments, he could’ve done so much for himself and for his country. On 8 March 1945, exactly a week after writing to his father, the Hunters ROTC once again attacked another Japanese garrison, this time in Bay. Captain Remo and his men provided rear guard action. During that scorching assault, the young hero from San Pedro Tunasán was felled by enemy bullets. He was barely 23 years of age when he gave up the ghost.

Captain Remo never had the opportunity to see his country free —  fighting still continued in many places until the Empire of Japan’s formal surrender on September 2 of that year on account of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki a month earlier. But it can never be denied the support the Hunters ROTC provided to the Philippine Commonwealth Army and the USAFFE was invaluable. Not only did they supplant the number of Allied troops on the ground but, with their prowess and skill, they also assisted in improving the timetable of military advance against the Japanese. All this success was realized because of the courage and discipline of troops as instilled by their superiors, one of whom was young Captain Remo. The phoenix has taken its flight to eternity.

In recognition of his patriotism, valor, and sacrifice, a monument was built at the town plaza of his beloved hometown as a constant reminder that heroism knows no age.


The Remoquillo clan posing in front of Capt. Remo’s monument at the old town plaza of San Pedro Tunasan. The elderly gentleman in front (wearing military cap) is Capt. Remo’s younger brother Vicente. He was the one who gave the author of this blogpost much needed information about the adventurous life of young Capt. Remo. Click here for more photos of today’s event.

Tinik ng Teatro Celebrates 30 years in Adamson University

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Press Release February 9, 2016 TNT 30th Anniversary Celebration


Tinik ng Teatro Celebrates 30 years in Adamson University

Hundreds of Adamsonian Tinik ng Teatro (TNT) alumni trooped back to ST Quadrangle last 6 February 2016 to celebrate their 30th anniversary hosted by the Tinik ng Teatro Alumni Association.

TNT is now officially the oldest student-based theater organization in Adamson University which started life in 1986. “This is a milestone for all of us; three decades of fruitful and meaningful journey for our beloved organization is no ordinary feat!” according to TNT Alumni Association president Teri Onor a.k.a Dexter Domínguez. The celebrity and Board Member from Bataán assumed the TNT alumni presidency post on 1 January 2016 after its two-term president, Mark Anthony Legaspi, succumbed to diabetes complications in December last year, shortly before the New Year.

“I am personally excited on the synergy that we will work on with Adamson University management, specifically the Cultural Affairs Office and the Adamson Grand Alumni Association. We have a pipeline of projects that we will pursue in the coming months aimed to nurture and advance the performing arts in Adamson,” added by Onor.

TNT Alumni Association was formed in 2009 in time for the 2011 silver anniversary of the group. Since then the association has been helping the school-based members financially for their production and marketing of their show. “This year, our assistance to TNT school-based and to our alumni will now include livelihood and medical assistance and we are also launching very soon our scholarship grant to deserving school-based or TNT alumni dependents,” said Onor.

The anniversary night paid tribute to the 1986 founding members of TNT and also bestowed a posthumous recognition to Mark Anthony Legaspi for his contribution and dedication in TNT; the award was received by his brother John. The event also announced TNT’s 2016 recipients of the Eduardo Alcalde Achievement Awards: María Vicenta Medina, United Nations (UN) volunteer for war-torn countries, and;  Adel Argüel, professional stage actress and senior artist of The Art Production. Pásig Congressman Román Rómulo provided the keynote speech while GMA-7 artist Boobsie Wonderland gave a surprise performance for the TNT alumni crowd.

The TNT anniversary night was preceded by a weeklong exhibit held at the Adamson Cardinal Santos Walkway from February 1 to February 5, 2016.  The exhibit showcased various memorabilia and rare photo collections of the different productions and projects of TNT done in the last 30 years. The exhibit was formally opened by OIA – Director Eva Dulay, TNT Alumni President Teri Onor, and TNT alumna and Showtime Kalokalike 2013 Grand Winner Jenny Catuyong.

“The presence of TNT in Adamson is a testament of the University’s holistic student formation that is not limited only to excellent academic programs, but also takes care of the different facets of student interest, such in our case the performing arts” according to TNT alumni public relations officer, Allan Catli.

Learn more about the upcoming productions and projects of Tinik ng Teatro; visit their Facebook fansite at


L-R: TNT Exhibit Week Opening at the Adamson University Cardinal Santos Walkway with Celebrity Impersonator Jenny Catuyon, TNT Alumni officers Teri Onor, Olive Deveza, OIA Director Eva Dulay, and TNT Alumni officer Adrian Ugali.


Pasig City Congressman Roman Romulo giving his keynote address to the TNT Alumni Association.


TNT Alumni Association President Dexter Dominguez a.k.a. Teri Onor delivering his plans and programs for the alumni association and the school-based members of TNT in Adamson University.


l-r: HGST VP for HR and wife of the late Eduardo “Ed” Alcalde, Maryann Alcalde; star builder, owner of The Library, Andrew Real, and; TNT alumni officer, professional stage actress, Adel Arguel, 2016 Ed Alcalde Achievement Awardee. Inset: digital image of TNT’s revered director and mentor, Eduardo Alcalde.


L-R: Maryann Alcalde (HGST VP for Human Resources), Maria Vicenta Medina (TNT 2016 Eduardo Alcalde Achievement Awardee), and star builder Andrew de Real.


Teri Onor hands a posthumous recognition to John Legaspi on behalf of his late brother Mark Anthony Legaspi, former TNT Alumni president.


Celebrity guest Boobsie Wonderland with TNT alumnus Jvee Amper.


TNT Alumni unite! L-R: Hon. Mon Arguelles (Imus City councilor) and couple Jing and Allan Catli (Allphones Head of Marketing Services) with their baby boy Connor.


Timeless neoclassical thespians of TNT, stronger and bolder than ever, celebrating 30 years of stage excellence in Adamson University!

Battle For Manila: we will never forget

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“It was Yank and Jap together that razed Intramuros. A dual crime.”
—Nick Joaquín—


A US battle tank gratuitously bores a hole through the gates of Fuerte de Santiago, Intramuros during the closing days of the war. This heartbreaking photo was taken exactly 71 years ago today.


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