News & Updates

37 World War 2 veterans honored

Lingayen, Pangasinan – The provincial government, in partnership with the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office, honored the bravery, patriotism, and selfless sacrifices of the World War II veterans on the commemoration of the 79th Lingayen Gulf Landing Anniversary and the 17th Pangasinan Veterans Day celebration held on January 9 at the Veterans Memorial Park here.

To date, there are 37 Pangasinan living veterans; the oldest is Valentin Untalan, 107 years old.

Gov. Ramon V. Guico III urged the public to treat the celebration as a treasure of Pangasinan and the whole country, as he called for the preservation and promotion of history for the next generation.

“Patriotism is something very important in our country, and it should be the responsibility of all leaders and all nations to promote patriotism—the driver and lifeblood of any nation. Our veterans are the most important example of patriotism. We will not be enjoying the freedom that we have today if not for the sacrifices and patriotism of our dear veterans,” the governor said.

In his message, Gov. Guico III called on the Provincial Tourism and Cultural Affairs Office (PTCAO) and all department heads to make the upcoming 80th celebration grander. He also disclosed that there might be a change of venue for the celebration because it is in time for the massive redevelopment of the Capitol Complex, which includes the building of a reflective pool at the back center of the Capitol building, and on the north side of the development near the beach is a Veterans Plaza with fountains and monuments in honor of the sacrifices of the Filipino veterans.
The governor hopes that said project will serve as a reminder to us Pangasinenses and Filipinos of what happened in the Lingayen Gulf during the world war.

“It would be a celebration of victory for our nation and allied forces that is worth preserving and sharing with the next generation,” he further stated.

On the part of the province, the Veterans Park and the Reflective Pool will all be made in honor of the nation’s and the province’s history and the participation of many of our provincemates in the victory of the World War.

Meanwhile, Vice Gov. Mark Ronald DG Lambino said that he was deeply touched at the sight of the veterans who attended the ceremony with enthusiasm comparable to that of the young soldier rising in defense of our country.

“May this day rekindle among us the commitment to rededicate ourselves to the service of our country so that we can all continue to enjoy our hard-earned freedom,” VG Lambino said.

When a short documentary film titled Pamana started to play, tears started to fall.

With this, the governor ordered the production of a documentary film about the lives of the remaining veterans, for the very reason that only they knew every detail of their experience during the war, which could not be found even in books.

Sec. of National Defense Gilberto C. Teodoro Jr., represented by USEC Reynaldo B. Mapagu, Administrator, Philippine Veterans Affairs Office; and PBGen Benjamin Acorda Jr. Chief, Philippine National Police; MGen Romeo Alamillo, President, Veterans Federation of the Philippines; Capt. Noel Corpus, US Naval Attache, US Embassy; Capt. Emma McDonald Kerr Ran, Defense Attache, Australian Embassy; Atty. Federico Manalo, Program Director, Philippine Veterans Bank, and other guests, including national, provincial, and local government officials and leaders, as well as Pangasinense veterans and their respective families, graced the event. (Chona C. Bugayong PIMRO)

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