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PMA Pioneer Class of 1940

25 February 2014

PMA Pioneer Class of 1940 as plebes in their drill uniforms.

As the dismissal of a dishonored salutatorian-to-be continue to keep netizens keyboards clicking, I prefer to think of a simpler time when soldiers embraced the honor code more tightly.

The National Defense Act created after the establishment of the Philippine Commonwealth, gave way to the establishment of an all-new Philippine Military Academy. After a nationwide call for PMA recruits, about 10,000 young men responded. Only 120 reported as plebes to the PMA at Teachers Camp, Baguio City on 15 June 1936 — and only 79 made it to graduation. The Class of 1940 wrote the Honor Code, renamed the school publication to “Corps”, composed “PMA, Oh! Hail To Thee”, and launched the “Peemay Slingo”. In the history of the Academy, only two cadets hold the distinction of being distinguished cadets (“Starmen”) from Fourth-Class to First-Class year — Licurgo E. Estrada and Washington M. Sagun, Valedictorian and salutatorian of Class 1940, respectively. They graduated on 15 March 1940 and went to war nineteen months later.

Meet the young men of the Pioneer Class of 1940 and see how they lived lives true to the academy’s motto of courage, integrity and loyalty. Click on their names to visit their family trees.

Col. Alberto K. Acenas, PAF was born on 15 June 1917 in Alaminos, Pangasinan. Bert is remembered as one of the finest wrestlers of PMA. He joined the PAAC and was assigned with the 9th Obsn Sqdn in Lahug, Cebu, where WWII found him. He prepared the landing fields in Cebu to handle B-17’s until the fall of Bataan. He married Emma Sison and they lived in Quezon City. After the war, he served with the Philippine Air Force and was Commandant of the AFOS before he retired. After his retirement in 1966, Bert was connected to the Philippines Rice and Corn Administration, San Sebastian College, Club Filipino and the Villamor Air Base Restaurant. He died on 28 May 2008 at age 91 in Orlando Florida, USA.

Col. Manuel A. Acosta, PA was born on 17 December 1916 in Laoag, Iloco Norte. Youngest of the Acosta Brothers Act (Flor ’37, Melchior ’40), Maning was quiet, unassuming but big-hearted. After graduation, he joined the FA where WW II found him as Btry Comdr, 301st FA. He served in Bataan with distinction. When Japanese planes strafed his position on Jan. 16,1942, Maning was seriously injured that his left arm had to be amputated at a Field Hospital, where he languished until the fall of Bataan. Taken POW, he joined the Death March and was interned in Capas. After his release as POW, he managed to rehabilitate himself and worked as a Social Worker at the Bureau of Public Welfare. On 31 July 1943, Maning married his sweetheart, Rosita S Henson of Pampanga. They lived in the affluent Greenhills Village in San Juan, Metro Manila. After the war, he studied at the Advance QuarterMasters Course in Fort Lee, VA. He held various positions within the Philippine Army. He was as Army QM Gen, Head-Phil Procurement Mission to Japan, and PMLO-Sangley Point. He served as Executive Director of the National Shrines Commission from 1972 to 1983. The Shrines in Bataan, Coregidor and Capas were started during Maning’s incumbency.

Col. Melchior A. Acosta, PA was born on 06 January 1915 in Laoag, Ilocos Norte. A combined law and business student before entering PMA, his opinion was invariably sought for and esteemed by his classmates. Mel was also the flyweight boxing champion of PMA in 1936-37. After graduation, he attended the Infantry School at Camp Murphy. Afterwards, he was assigened to the UP ROTC, Los Baños. On 19 July 1941, he married Lourdes Isla and five months later, Mel was fighting the enemy in Bataan. He was taken POW, joined the Death March and was incarcerated in Capas. After his release as a sick POW, he joined the USAFIPNL guerillas where he won a Gold Cross Medal for gallantry in action. After the war, he was sent to the Infantry School in Ft. Benning, GA. He served in various positions of responsibility in the new PA. In 1966, Mel joined the private sector to become a successful insurance underwriter. He died on 9 Jan 1983, three days after his 68th birthday.

Cmdre. Haracleo J. Alano, PN was born on 23 October 1915 in Laoay, Bohol.  After graduation, Mike  joined the Off-Shore Patrol (OSP) nucleus of the Navy and was the ExO of Q-111, lst Q-Boat Sqn when WW II started. He won a silver star for gallantry against enemy dive bombers near Corregidor on 17 January 1942.  When Bataan fell his Q-Boat was sunk by the Japanese planes and a destroyer. He  managed to swim ashore at Batangas where he made good his escape to Bohol and joined the Inginiero guerilla forces. Among his guerilla subordinates was one Carlos P. Garcia who later became Philippine President after Magsaysay died in a plane crash. Pres. Garcia appointed him to be FOIC, PN. He had this post during the Marcos regime.  After the war, Mike rejoined the OSP and helped pioneer a new and bigger Navy. He was one of the last members of the class to get married in 1955 to Dolly, a lady from Dipolog. He assumed various positions of responsibility in the AFP that culminated in his being FOIC, PN.  He died on 22 March 1983 after a second heart attack at age 68.  A Naval coastal patrol boat and the Naval Base Cavite have been named in his honor.

Cmdre Ramon A. Alcaraz, PN was born on 31 August 1915 in Quingua, Bulacan. Monching was a writer for the PMA publication “Corps” and the bantam weight boxing champion in 1937 and 1938. After graduation, he became the Captain of Q-112 torpedo boat and saw gallant action during WW II under the direct command of MacArthur. He was awarded the Silver Star for shooting down 3 low flying Japanese planes off Bataan in 17 January 1942 and won a field promotion. After the fall of Bataan, he became a POW and was interned in Capas. After his release as POW, he joined the guerillas in Bulacan where he became a Regimental Commander. After the war, he rejoined the OSP and helped in building a new and bigger navy. He organized the Marines in 1950 on orders of the then defense secretary Magsaysay. He held various key positions and was promoted to Commodore, the highest navy rank in 1965. In 1966, Monching was relieved summarily as Fleet Commander.A controversy on the issue of honor was raised by Alcaraz. It escalated into a Congressional Investigation which cleared him of any wrong doing. After retirement, he and his pharmacist wife, Concepcion, whom he married in 1960 established a chain of drug stores they called Commodore Drug. When Marcos declared Martial Law in 1972, Monching went to California where he became a successful realtor. He passed away on 29 June 2009 in the United States.

Col. Ricardo Y. Angeles, PC was born on 07 February 1919 in Manila. Ric was a good boxer and also excelled in basketball. After graduation, he joined the infantry and saw action in Bataan during WW II with courage and determination. After Bataan surrendered, he was taken POW. He was in the Death March and concentrated in Capas with his comrades. He survived the ordeal as POW and was released in August 1942 to recover from his ailments. After the liberation of the Philippines in 1945, he reported to military control and was assigned with MIT ROTC where he met Irene Gopez. They were married on 11 December 1948. Later, Ric was assigned with the newly reopened PMA, where he became the Professor in Military Engineering. As a member of the Corps of Professors at PMA, he was sent to Stanford University in California for his Master’s Degree in Structural Engineering. Upon his return to PMA, Ric was designated Head of the Engineering Department until his retirement on 15 June 1959. After his retirement, he accepted a full time engineering professorship at MIT, a post he held until he died on 8 December 1984 at age 65.

Cmdre. Felix M. Apolinario, PN was born on 2 May 1918 in Santa Cruz,  Manila.  Poling earned the monicker “verbatim” during his senior year, because of his studiousness.  After graduation, he joined the OSP, saw action in Bataan as ground support for the lst Q-Boat Sqdn and beach defense in Lamao. After  Bataan  fell, he became a POW, was interned in Capas and released as a sick POW in August 1942.  After the war he reported to military control and helped rebuild a new  OSP that later became the Philippine Navy. He held various positions that culminated in his becoming FOIC, PN in 1965, a post he held up to his retirement in  June 1966.  After retirement, Poling established a company dealing with marine electronics, life saving equipment, airplane parts, firefighting and audio equipment. Eleng  was also a devoted golfer and played the game as a hobby for many years.  He passed away in July 1999 at  age  81.

Col. Alfredo S. Filart married Paz L. Ubaldo, a granddaughter of Jose Rizal’s sister, Olimpia. Paz is the sister of Alfredo’s “mistah” Tomas Tirona.

Lt. Col. Tomas Carrasco Tirona, PAF was jailed at Fort Bonifacio during WWII. He wrote the book “The Philippine Anti-Communist Campaign” and designed the insignia of the Philippine Army Air Corps. He married Leonarda L. Ubaldo, a granddaughter of Jose Rizal’s sister, Olimpia. Leonarda is the sister of Tom’s “mistah” Alfredo S. Filart.

*****

More profiles and family trees to come!  Pedro C. Aragon Jr. :: Alberto S. Aranzaso :: Delfin E. Argao :: Pedro C. Baban :: Uldarico S. Baclagon :: Pacifico B. Barrios :: Pedro J. Bartolome :: Sofio E. Bayron :: Pedro C. Bersola :: Reynaldo R. Bocalbos :: Abenir D. Bornales :: Deogracias F. Caballero :: Bartolome C. Cabangbang :: Urbano B. Caldoza :: Abraham C. Campo :: Felicisimo S. Castillo :: Florecio C. Causin :: Charles L. Corpuz :: Cipriano P. De Leon :: Francisco P. Del Castillo :: Ciceron P. Dela Cruz :: Pedro D. Dulay Jr. :: Lauro A. Ello :: Nolasco M. Escobar :: Jose S. Esguerra :: Licurgo E. Estrada :: Quirico B. Evangelista :: Horacio N. Farolan :: Felipe J. Fetalvero :: Ricardo A. Foronda :: Amos M. Francia :: Pedro B. Francisco :: Lucendro L. Galang :: Dominador M. Garcia :: Ramon C. Gelvezon :: Basilio T. Genson :: Vicente E. Gepte :: Daniel M. Iway :: Eulalio Q. Jamilosa :: Jose M. Javier :: Francisco M. Jimenez :: Romeo R. Lising :: Francisco E. Lumen :: Job T. Mayo :: Jose M. Mendoza :: Reynaldo A. Mendoza :: Gregorio P. Mercado :: Crisostomo M. Monta :: Cesar U. Montemayor :: Conrado E. Nano :: Edmundo G. Navarro :: Ramon Q. Nosce :: Aristoteles B. Olaybar :: Ramon A. Olbes :: Epimaco V. Orias :: Victor M. V :: Damian G. Pavon :: David A. Pelayo :: Antonio P. Perez :: Liberato R. Picar :: Salvador T. Piccio :: Mariano Q. Punsalang :: Jose A. Rodriguez :: Washington M. Sagun :: Marcelino M. Santos :: Faustino R. Sebastian :: Epifanio E. Segovia :: Eduardo P. Soliman :: Leon Ma. J. Trinidad :: Hospicio B. Tuazon :: Segundo P. Velasco :: Francisco B. Vitug :: Pedro M. Yap

Read more…

2013 Senatoriables and their political pedigrees

6 May 2013

by Mona Magno-Veluz

Qualification, Platform, Motive — these are the three textbook criteria voters should look at when we exercise our right to chose our leaders.  But as we near yet another election, many questions return.  Does political pedigree matter?  Do candidates whose family members are also in politics do so out of a remarkable, collective desire to serve the nation?  Or are they simply protecting the influence and power their positions have brought their families?

Table 1. The Political Pedigree Quadrants

I looked at the genealogies of the 2013 candidates for the Senate and I classified them into four groups, based on the number of relatives who have held public services posts in recent and distant history.

Lone Wolves

These candidates do not have any relatives in government today.   Or at least, not that we know of.  They are Samson Alcantara, Greco Belgica, Teodoro Casiño, Rizalito David, Baldomero Falcone, Edward Hagedorn, Gregorio Honasan, Risa Hontiveros, Marwil Llasos, Ernesto Maceda, Ramon Montaño, Ricardo Penson, Antonio Trillanes IV and Eddie Villanueva.

Fading Families

Jamby Madrigal does not have any relatives active in government today.  But her families include past public servants:  Pacita Madrigal-Gonzalez (aunt – legislator), Chito Madrigal-Collantes (aunt – legislator), José Abad Santos (grandfather – chief justice), Vicente Lopez Madrigal (grandfather – legislator) and Pedro Abad Santos (granduncle – legislator).

Nouveau Politicos

A handful of candidates have made politics a relatively recent family “business”.  These candidates have one or more family members currently or recently active in politics; but they have no true political pedigree to speak of.

  • Nancy Binay - Abigail Binay (sister – legislator).  Jejomar Binay, Jr. (brother – mayor).  Jejomar Binay (father – mayor, vice-president).  Elenita Sombillo-Binay (mother – mayor).
  • Alan Peter Cayetano - Pia S. Cayetano (sister – legislator).  Rene Carl S. Cayetano (brother – councilor).  Lino Edgardo S. Cayetano (brother – baranggay captain).  Renato Cayetano (father – legislator)
  • JV Ejercito  -  Jinggoy Ejercito (half-brother – mayor, legislator). Emilio Ejercito (first cousin – mayor, governor). Girlie Ejercito (first-cousin’s wife – mayor). Gary Ejercito (first cousin – provincial board). Joseph Estrada (father – mayor, legislator, president). Luisa Pimentel-Ejercito (father’s wife – legislator).
  • Jack Enrile - Salvacion Santiago-Enrile (wife – legislator).  Juan Ponce Enrile (father – legislator).  Christina Castañer-Enrile (mother – ambassador to Vatican).
  • Richard Gordon.  John Carlos de los Reyes (nephew – senatorial aspirant).  James J. Gordon (brother – mayor).  James Leonard Gordon (father – mayor). Amelia Juico-Gordon (mother – mayor).
  • John Carlos Gordon de los ReyesSee entries under Richard Gordon.
  • Loren Legarda - Jose Antonio S. Leviste II (husband’s nephew – vice-governor).  Antonio Leviste (husband – governor).  Feliciano P. Leviste (husband’s uncle – governor).
  • Aquilino Pimentel III - Aquilino Pimentel, Jr.(father – mayor, legislator).
  • Grace Poe - Fernando Poe Jr. (father – Presidential aspirant).
  • Christian Señeres - Roy V. Señeres (father – Phil labor attache in UAE).
  • Cynthia Villar – Manny Villar (husband – legislator).  Vergel Aguilar (brother – mayor). Imelda T. Aguilar (sister – mayor).  Filemon Aguilar (father – legislator).

Political Dynasties

These candidates have relatives occupying elected and appointed positions in government for multiple generations — acquired by blood and by marriage.  They are entrenched in politics, business and high society.  Their campaigns are run like clockwork because patronage politics in their home provinces run deep and their ancestors have laid the foundation for a nationwide support system.  Meet the politically pedigreed.

  • Juan Edgardo Angara.  Generation 0: Godofredo Angara, Jr. (cousin – QC city engineer). Karen G. Angara (cousin – councilor). Zenaida A. Collinson (Phil Consul in London).  Generation 1: Edgardo Angara (father – legislator). Arturo J. Angara (uncle – mayor). Bellaflor J. Angara-Castillo (aunt – governor, legislator). Godofredo J. Angara (uncle – QC city engineer). Joselito J. Angara (uncle – mayor). Leticia J. Angara-Moises (aunt – DSWD Usec).  Generation 2: Jose Angara (grand-uncle – legislator).
  • Bam Aquino.  Generation 0: Benigno C. Aquino III (first cousin – legislator, president).  Generation 1: Agapito A. Aquino (uncle – legislator). Benigno A. Aquino (uncle – mayor, governor, legislator). Corazon C. Aquino (aunt – president). Tessie A. Aquino (aunt – legislator).  Antolin Oreta (aunt’s husband – mayor).  Generation 2: Benigno Simeon Q. Aquino (grandfather – legislator). Melecio Lampa Aquino (granduncle – legislator).  Herminio Sanchez Aquino (granduncle – legislator).  Generation 3: Servillano A. Aquino (great-grandfather – mayor, governor, legislator).  Generation 4: Braulio Aquino (2x great-grandfather – mayor).  Generation 5: Mariano V. Henson (3x great-grand-uncle – mayor).  Generation 7: Angel Pantaleon de Miranda (5x great-grandfather – founder of Angeles, Pampanga).
  • Tingting Cojuangco.  Generation -1: Benigno C. Aquino (husband’s nephew – legislator, president). Charlie Cojuangco (husband’s first cousin’s son – legislator), Mark Cojuangco (husband’s first cousin’s son – legislator), Dodot Jaworski (son-in-law – legislator). Isabel Cojuangco-Suntay (husband’s first cousin’s daughter – governatorial aspirant). Gibo Teodoro (husband’s first cousin’s son – presidential aspirant, cabinet member).  Generation 0: Jose S. Cojuangco (husband – mayor, legislator). Cory S. Aquino (sister-in-law, president). Danding M. Cojuangco (husband’s first cousin – governor, presidential aspirant). Enrique M. Cojuangco (husband’s first cousin – legislator). Mercedes M. Cojuangco (husband’s first cousin – legislator). Gilberto Teodoro (husband’s first cousin’s husband – SSS President). Robert Jaworski (daughter’s father-in-law – legislator).  Edu Manzano (first cousin – vice-mayor, VP aspirant).  Vilma Santos (first cousin’s ex-wife – governor). Generation 1: Jose Chichioco Cojuangco, Sr. (father-in-law – legislator). Eduardo Chichioco Cojuangco, Sr. (husband’s uncle – governor).  Generation 2: Melecio Estrella Cojuangco (husband’s grandfather – legislator).  Explore her family tree here.
  • Francis Escudero.  Generation 1: Salvador H. Escudero III (father – legislator). Generation 2: Salvador Escudero, Jr. (grandfather – mayor). Generation 3: Salvador C. Escudero Sr. (great-grandfather – mayor, governor).
  • Ramon Magsaysay, Jr.  Generation -1: Mitos Magsaysay (wife of first cousin’s son).  Generation 0: Vicente Magsaysay (first cousin – governor). Eulogio Magsaysay (first cousin – legislator).  Generation 1: Ramon Magsaysay (father – president).
  • Mitos Magsaysay.  See entries under Ramon Magsaysay Jr.
  • Juan Miguel Zubiri.  Generation 0: Joey Zubiri (brother – legislator). Ignacio W. Zubiri (cousin – councilor, vice-mayor).  Generation 1: Jose Maria Zubiri (father – legislator, governor). Rosenda Anne Ocampo (aunt – legislator). Pablo V. Ocampo IV (uncle – councilor).  Generation 2: Pablo V. Ocampo (granduncle – legislator).   Generation 3: Bartolome Seda Fernandez (great-grandfather – provincial auditor). Manuel Maronilla Calleja (great-granduncle – governor). Pablo Ocampo (great-grandfather – legislator).  Generation 4: Ignacio Calleja (2x great-grandfather – mayor).

Does a family’s need to field other family members to available positions in government translate to a sinister agenda?  Can a politician who bears an unfamiliar surname win a national election?  You decide.

Table 2. 2013 Senatoriables and their Relatives in Government

Olympic Pinoys

31 July 2012

The Philippines has been participating in the Summer Olympic Games since 1924 in Paris. While some years were more exciting than others, the spirit of the colorful Filipinos who walk in the Olympic parade of nations to compete in this quadrennial event has, over the years, remained constant. Below are short profiles on Olympic Pinoys and links which lead to their biographies and/or family trees.

Elizalde

Fred Elizalde competed in the 1960 Rome Olympics in swimming. He serves as the chairman of multiple corporations — among them Manila Broadcasting Company, Star Parks Corporation, Philippine International Corporation (Philcite), Elizalde Holdings Corporation and Northern Capiz Agro-Industrial Development Corporation (Norcaic).

Hechanova

Rafael Hechanova was part of the Philippine national basketball team to the 1952 Helsinki Olympics. He is an architect and real estate developer. He joined the Rotary Club of Makati, Rizal, Philippines, in 1967 and served as 1996-98 RI director and as governor of District 3830. He was inducted into the Philippine Basketball Hall of Fame in 2000.

Jacob

Christine Jacob competed in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. She is now a television personality.

Jaworski

Robert Jaworski, competed in basketball at the 1968 Mexico Olympics. He became a professional basketball player and coach and a Philippine senator.

Macapagal

Arturo Macapagal represented the Philippines at the 1972 Munich Olympics and at the 1976 Montreal Olympics in mixed free pistol. His father and sister both served as Presidents of the Philippines.

1924 Paris Olympics

David Nepomuceno was a sprinter and the lone representative at the 1924 Paris Olympics. He was a soldier who served in the Philippine Scouts and eventually, the United States Navy. He died on September 27, 1939 at age 39.

Ocampo

Edgardo Ocampo joined the basketball teams that competed in the 1960 Rome Olympics, 1968 Mexico Olympics and the 1972 Munich Olympics. He became a professional basketball player and coach.

Pacheco

Eduardo Alvir Pacheco competed in the 1960 Rome Olympics in men’s basketball. A competitive athlete since his youth, he played collegiate varsity basketball and football. Eddie was a member of the RP Football team to the Asian Games in 1954 and in 1958 and the Asian World Cup in 1963.

Padilla

Ambrosio Padilla was the team captain and led the Philippines to a fifth place finished in the 1936 Berlin Olympics.  He became a lawyer, a Solicitor General and a senator of the Philippines.

Padilla

Carlos Padilla Sr. competed in the 1932 Los Angeles Summer Olympics in the men’s welterweight event. From an acting family, he also appeared in several films.

Padilla

Jose “Pempe” Padilla competed in the boxing (lightweight) in the 1932 Los Angeles and 1936 Berlin Olympics. From a family of performers, he also appeared in numerous films.

Preysler

Fausto Preysler competed for the Philippines in the 1960 Rome Olympics in Yachting. He was also Philippine Squash champion. He is the President of Smith Bell & Co., Inc. and Resident Consul in the Philippines for Costa Rica.

Toribio

Simeon G. Toribio competed in the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics, the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics (where he bagged the bronze in men’s high-jump) and the 1936 Berlin Olympics. He was born and raised in Mercedes, Zamboanga.  He became a lawyer and eventually, a member of Congress, representing the second district of Bohol.

White (left)

Miguel S. White was a Fil-Am Bicolano who won the bronze at the 1936 Berlin Olympics in the 400 metre hurdles, losing the silver by a split-second. He became a lieutenant in the 52nd Infantry Regiment of the Philippine Army and was Missing in Action in WWII.

Yabut

Denise Yabut-Cojuangco is a Filipino equestrienne who represented the country in show jumping in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics and 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

Yldefonso

Teófilo E. Yldefonso was a breaststroke swimmer who competed in the 1928 Ansterdam Olympics, 1932 Los Angeles Olympics and the 1936 Berlin Olmpics. Known as the “Ilocano Shark”, he is the first Filipino to win an Olympic medal, and the only Filipino to win multiple medals. Yldefonzo fought against the Japanese in Bataan. He survived the Bataan Death March, but later died at Capas Concentration Camp. His remains have never been recovered. His great-grandson, Daniel Coakley, represented the Philippines in the 2008 Beijing Olympics in freestyle.

Teresita Herbosa’s Ascendants

27 July 2012

SEC Chairperson Teresita Herbosa is one of the candidates being considered for the Supreme Court Chief Justice post recently-vacated by Renato Corona.  On-line resources are abundant on her educational background and her experience as a lawyer, writer and educator.  She was cited as one of the country’s top three litigators by International Financial Law Review.

There is much reference to her being a Rizal descendant as well.  For the record, Teresita Herbosa is the great-granddaughter of Lucia Rizal, the fifth child of Francisco Mercado and Teodora Alonzo and was the older sister of our esteemed national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal.

Lucia Rizal was married to Mariano Herbosa, a Batangueno farmer.  Lucia was close to her younger brother and wrote to him often — calling the persecution their family suffered in Calamba as “abuse, madness”.  When her husband Mariano died in the cholera epidemic in 1889, he was denied a Christian burial because the deceased was a brother-in-law of someone who criticized the Catholic Church.

Lucia sent her two sons, Estanislao and Teodisio, to Dapitan to be educated in the school Jose Rizal established during his exile.  In his letters to his sister, Rizal reported that Tan (Estanislao’s nickname) loved browsing books and loved studying; while Teodisio had a liking for the land, not books.  When he asked the boys what they wanted from Manila, Tan asked for a book and Teodisio a bolo.  Her daughter Delfina Herbosa was among the first females to join the Katipunan.  Another daughter, Josefina Herbosa-Natividad was among the exiled who helped sew the first Philippine flag.

Explore the family tree  of Lucia Rizal-Herbosa.  Note that some nodes of the tree are private and require approval from the profile owner to view.

Research Notes

-”Readings and Communication Skills in English“.  Manila: Rex Bookstore, Inc.  Date accessed: 27 July 2012.

-”Rizal, The Greatest Filipino Hero“. Manila: Rex Bookstore, Inc. Date accessed: 27 July 2012.

The Littons of Manila

19 April 2012

No, the surname is NOT derived from some migrant Chinese ancestor named “Li Ton”.

Clan motto: Prudentia gloriam acquiret or Prudence generates glory.

The Manila Littons are of European descent. Burke’s “History of the Landed Gentry in Great Britain and Ireland” lists Litton’s as Huguenots. The Huguenots were members of the Protestant Reformed Church of France who were had been driven from France during a series of religious persecutions in the late 17th century by the dominant Catholic Church. They migrated to a tranquil valley, now called Littondale in Yorkshire. A branch of the clan moved to Dublin, Ireland around 1660. One can still find traces of the Littons’ legacy in present-day Ireland. A small street off the river that cuts through Dublin’s East end into the Dublin Bay is called Litton Lane which is steeped in modern music history. What is now Litton Lane Hostel used to be the recording studios of such world-famous performers like U2 and Van Morrison.

Research conducted by Filipino genealogist Mona Magno-Veluz traces the movement of the Littons to Asia from Europe and their connection via maternal links to other prominent (some medieval) European clans. The person highlighted is the son of the next.

A family tree in graphic form can be found here (click tree icons to expand).

GENERATION 1. George Litton Sr., the patriarch of the Manila Litton’s, moved to the Philippines from China, acquiring properties and establishing businesses — among them, the Litton Knitting Mills (founded in 1954). Their pre-war home in Manila along Isaac Peral (now U.N. Avenue) corner Florida (now M. Orosa) Streets, was “a beautiful three storey Moorish styled edifice with arches, balconies, and a roof garden” in the affluent neighborhood of the city, home to many a businessmen and expatriates of the day. He first married Rosa Tulod, with whom he had the following children. His second wife was Leonor Trinidad Sochayseng.

The Litton Residence in 1945, after the Battle of Manila.

(1a) George T. Litton Jr. serves as the honorary consul of the Dominican Republic to Manila.
(1b) James T. Litton has worked tirelessly for the erection of monuments to the memory of the WWII heroes. He is a lawyer and a hardworking member of the “Battling Bastards of Bataan”.
(1c) Edward T. Litton
(1d) Emma Litton-Laperal
(1e) Gloria Litton-del Rio
(1f) Grace Litton-Gallego
(1f) Johnny T. Litton is a businessman, television personality and society columnist.

GENERATION 2George John L’Establere Litton was born around 1867 in Dublin, Ireland. He matriculated at Oxford University’s Oriel College on 14 December 1885 at age 18.  In 1891, he was appointed cadet at the Straits Settlements,  a group of British territories located in the Malayan Peninsula.  He moved to China where he began his career as a diplomat and occupied various government posts:  Student Interpreter (1895), acting Consul at Chungking (1898-1899) Assistant at the Burma-China Frontier Delimitation Commission (1899-1900), First Class Assistant (1900), Officer-in-charge at Teng-yueh (1901-1902) and at Yunnan-fu (1902-1903) and finally, Consul at Teng-yueh, Yunnan (1903-1906).  Unfortunately, he lived a short life — he died on 09 January 1906 at Kingai, China at 39 years old. His worldly possessions worth 21,134 pounds (about 2.4 million pounds today) was granted to George Barker and Ronald Peake by a probate judge in London on 05 May 1906. He married a local girl, So Hopi, whose Western name is Mary; and they were blessed with several children — among them:

(2a) George Litton Sr. (See Generation 1).
(2b) John Letablere Litton (1903-1941) married Enid Litton of Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong. He was a gunner for Hong Kong Volunteer Defence Corps and died during the bitter fighting that took place in the crucial weeks before the fall of Hong Kong on Christmas Day 1941 to the Japanese attackers. He rests at the Stanley Military Cemetery in Hong Kong.

GENERATION 3. Edward Falconer Litton born in 1827 in Dublin, Ireland. He was educated in law at Trinity College Dublin, and kept a Dublin address at 67 Merrion Square. He was accepted into the Irish bar in 1849 and made a Queen’s Counsel in 1874. He wrote scholarly opinions — among them, “Life or Death: the Destiny of the Soul in the Future State” (1866). He served in Cork and Wicklow circuit. He served as a Liberal Member of Parliament of Tyrone in 1880 and a Judge of the Supreme Court in 1890. He served as the first a Judicial Land Commissioner in Ireland, under the Land Law Act of 1881. He died on 27 November 1890 in Dublin, Ireland. In his lifetime, he married three times:

(3a) In 1851, Bridget Elizabeth Tuthill. She was born in 19 February 1831 to Christopher Tuthill and Grace Reeves. She died on 27 December 1859 in Dublin, Ireland. Among their six children was George John Letablere Litton (See Generation 2).
(3b) In 1861, Elizabeth Clarke.  Their 6 children were:
… (3b-i) Edward Letablere Litton was born on 19 November 1864. He inherited the ancestral Ardavilling house from his uncle John Litton . He qualified as a Barrister and settled into his father’s practice. In 1894, he married Ida Gordon of Dublin and died on his 37th birthday from internal haemorrhage.
… (3b-ii) Marshal William Litton was as lawyer and was the first coffee planter in Mysore, India. He was badly wounded in the First World War; and in the Irish Troubles, he gave valuable assistance to the British Authorities.
… (3c-iii) Maria Charlotte Litton
… (3d-iv) Esther Maude Vareilles Litton
… (3d-v) Helen Vareilles
… (3d-vi) Charlott Litton
(3c) Mary Lee of London from whom he had 1 son.
(3d) Adelaide Trotter of Galway from whom he had 1 daughter.

GENERATION 4. Daniel Litton (died in 1875) was a wine merchant.  He married Jane Minchin (daughter of William Falkiner Minchin and Maria Gabbett) and had the following children:

(4a) Edward Falconer Litton (See Generation 3)
(4b) Helena Maria Litton was born on 16 April 1824 and died on 03 April 1865 in Dublin, Ireland. She married Charles Langley Tuthill on 28 January 1847 in Dublin, Ireland.
(4c) Charlotte Esther Litton
(4d) Jane Hannah Litton

GENERATION 5. Edward Litton was born in Dublin, Ireland on 05 February 1754. He became an officer of the 37th (North Hampshire) Regiment of Foot. He served in the American War, having been present at the battle of Bunker Hill in 1775. He died in July 1808. Edward married Esther Charlotte Letablere, who bore her the following children:

(5a) Thomas Litton married Anne Nickson. He died on December 1859.
(5b) Daniel Litton (see Generation 4)
(5c) Edward Litton attended Trinity College in Dublin in 1830. He served as an Member of Parliament for Coleraine from 1827 to 1842. He was a Master of the Court of Chancery in 1842. He married Sophia Stewart he died in 1869.
(5d) John Litton married Vescina Hamilton.
(5e) Mary Litton married Joseph Gabbett.

It was the grandfather of Edward Litton (see Generation 5), Thomas Litton, (1657-1741) who was among the first of the Litton Clan to move to Ireland. He married the daughter of a Dublin citizen of Dutch extraction. Before then, he lived in Littondale in Yorkshire.

Having hit a wall on the Litton branch, let us explore the maternal Letablere line. “Letablere” or “de L’Establere” is an ancient family in France, several members of which settled in England and Ireland. Typical of Western naming practices, “Letablere” appears as the second name of many descendants from this line.

GENERATION 6. Daniel Letablere married Madeleine Vareilles in 1749. Esther Charlotte Letablere (see Generation 5) is second of their three children.

GENERATION 7. Rene de la Douespe Letablere was the lord of the manor of Lestablere, which used to stand ” in the parishes of Saint-Germain and Mouchamps, near Fontenai, in Lower Poitou”. A Hugeunot (Calvinist Protestant), he fled France in 1685 as a 22 year-old, after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes which triggered wide-spread persecution by the dominantly Catholic population. He arrived in Holland from Caen in the same year and entered the military service of the Prince of Orange. He was an officer in Du Cambon’s Foot at the Battle of the Boyne in 1690, and later, in Liffor’s House.  He settled in Dublin and shortened his name to Letablere.  He had at least one son, Daniel Letablere (see Generation 6).

(On-going)

Research Notes

- “Blain Biographical Directory of Anglican clergy in the South Pacific, 2011 edition”. Date accessed: 20 April 2012.
- Burke, Bernard. “A genealogical and heraldic history of the landed gentry of Great Britain & Ireland, Volume 2“. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin, 1871. Date digitized: 18 Sep 2008. Date accessed: 18 April 2012.
- “Computing ‘Real Value’ Over Time With a Conversion Between U.K. Pounds and U.S. Dollars, 1830 to Present“. Measuring worth. Date accessed: 19 April 2012.
- “England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1861-1941“, Record for Daniel Litton. Date accessed: 17 April 2012.
- “England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1861-1941” Record for George John Letablere Litton. Date accessed: 16 April 2012.
- Foley, Annemarie. “Ardavilling gate cottage and house“. Housetorian. Date published: 07 March 2011. Date accessed: 16 April 2012.
- Hooper, Virginia S. “We travel with a multitude.” Santa Clara, California. 1970. Date accessed: 18 April 2012.
- Howard, Joseph Jackson and Crisp, Frederick Arthur. “Visitation of Ireland“. 1897, Genealogical Publishing Com. Date accessed: 17 April 2012.
- “Ireland, Births and Baptism, 1620-1911“, Record for Vescina Letablere Litton. Date accessed: 18 April 2012.
- “Irish Pedigrees Volume II“. Date accessed: 17 April 2012.
- “John Letablere Litton Hong Kong“. Genealogy Forum. Date posted: 09 January 2005. Date accessed: 20 April 2012.
- Kisbey, WH. “The Land Law (Ireland) Act, 1881“. Ireleand: Hodges, Figgis and Co., 1881. Date accessed: 17 April 2012
- Litton, James. “The Battle of Manila“. Date accessed: 19 April 2012.
- “Mark Clarke’s family and the families of Going, Litton, Oliver and Dobbs“. Date accessed: 20 April 2012.
- Maunsell, Robert George. “History of Maunsell, or Mansel and of Crayford, Gabbett, Knoyle, Persse, Toler, Waller, Castletown : Waller, Prior Park : Warren, White, Winthrop, and Mansell of Guernsey“. Cork, Ireland: Guy and Co, 1903. Date accessed: 18 April 2012.
- “Oxford University Alumni, 1500-1886“, Record for George John Letablere Litton. Date accessed: 16 April 2012.
- “Who’s who in the Far East, 1906-1907“. Hong Kong: China Mail, 1906. Date accessed: 20 April 2012.

Maria Grace Amagna Ibuna

22 March 2012

Grace Ibuna is a businesswoman, who has, over the years, crept into the public eye, because of her colorful choice in partners. She had a brief affair with Gabby Concepcion (who, like her, grew up in San Juan), and bore a daughter Gabrielle Marie or Garie (now a recording artist). Grace was married (and is now estranged from ) Joseph Javier — this marriage bore Ma. Rafaelle Grace and Jose Miguel. Her most recent relationship was with solon Ignacio “Iggy” Tuason Arroyo, who passed away in London this year after a prolonged illness. The battle for the remains and properties of the congressman and the animosity between his partners and children, have been in the news for weeks.

Grace descends from at least two generations of San Juan politicians. Her grandfather, Nicanor Castillo Ibuna, the longest-serving mayor of the city of San Juan, is a footnote in political history as the man who lost to the popular film actor, Joseph Estrada, in a race for mayor in 1967. This win was the germ of the Estrada political dynasty in San Juan. Her father, Rodolfo S. Ibuna, a successful business man, had ambitions of following the footsteps of his father in government. He ran for San Juan mayor and lost to Joseph Estrada in the 1970s. Explore her family tree here.

Grace Ibuna on “The Buzz”.

While the surname sounds indigenous, the origins of the first bearers of the Ibuna surname in the Philippines are not known.

It is interesting to note that “Ibuna” is an Arabic patronymic name, equivalent to “-son”. So, “Ismail Ibuna Mustafa” would mean “Ismail, son of Mustafa”. In modern Arabic naming conventions, this term is very often shortened into “ibn”, “bin”, “ben”, “ibnu” or “ibni”, depending on geography. This patronymic marker, in the long form “Ibuna”, is rarely used — a notable exception is the names of the Tamil-speaking Sri Lankan Moors. We wonder if the Ibuna Clan has some exotic east Asian ancestry waiting to be uncovered.

Resource Notes

1. Constantino-Medina, Rogelio. “Grace Ibuna: We should never regret the things that we have done“. Philippine Daily Inquirer. Date published: 05 February 2012. Date accessed: 15 March 2012. [This article erroneously identifies Grace Ibuna's father.]

2. Crisostomo, Isabelo T. “President Joseph Ejercito Estrada, from stardom to history: the saga of a child of destiny“. Michigan: J. Kriz Publisher, 1999. Date digitized: 10 September 2008. Date accessed: 15 March 2012.

3. “Names and Titles among the Moors“. Sailan Muslim. Date accessed: 15 March 2012.

4. “Patronymic“. Wikipedia. Date modified: 05 March 2012. Date accessed: 15 March 2012.

Dito, Noon: Manila City Hall

19 March 2012

The image below is a composite of a 2005 photo of the Manila City Hall and 1945 version from the US Library of Congress image showing General Douglas MacArthur watching the envoys from the defeated Japanese forces arrive.  American soldiers and Filipinos look on on the ground floor. The building is now painted, and some greenery has grown around the structure; but the two windows remain.  [I do not own these images.  The original comparison can be found on Skyscraper City.]

Find more “history fades” here.

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