SAN CARLOS CITY–The city again honored its most eminent son on November 13.
San Carlos City was the birth place and final resting place of Speaker Eugenio Padlan Perez, or “Manong Eniong” as he was fondly called.
And in his honor, Pangasinan Day is fittingly celebrated annually on his birth anniversary, November 13, by virtue of Republic Act Number 6721 signed by then President Corazon C. Aquino on March 20, 1989.
Born on November 13, 1896, Speaker Perez died on August 4, 1957 at age 60.
One of the highlights of this year’s celebration was a letter from the daughter of Speaker Perez, Atty. Connie Perez, who wrote to her fellow Carleñans a long message which was read aloud by her kin, Marilou Reyes.
Atty. Perez acknowledged that she and her siblings are very touched that their hometown continually honors the memory of their father.
“We consider this city a home even if we only make a visit here occasionally. But deep in our hearts, we know how deeply Carleñans love our father,” she wrote.
“It is also about time to inform and educate Carleñans on how a simple man of the masses became one of the distinguished men of San Carlos City and of the whole country” she added.
The Perez clan likewise cherished the memory of the late Mayor Jolly Resuello on whose term a monument of Speaker Perez was erected at the city plaza, now known as the Speaker Perez Memorial Amphitheatre.
Aside from Mayor Jolly, Atty. Perez cited the Binalatongan Historical and Cultural Foundation headed by Engr. Marcelo Casillan, and the several historians from the city, both living and deceased, who have perpetuated the heroic legacy of the many heroes of Binalatongan, the old name of San Carlos City, including Juan dela Cruz Palaris and Andres Malong.
Meanwhile Mayor Julier Resuello, in his keynote speech, recalled how his deceased father, Mayor Jolly, admired Speaker Eugenio Perez.
“My father had said that although he did not meet Speaker Perez in person, he had always admired the Speaker greatly,” said Resuello.
The celebration started with a Holy Mass at the Saint Dominic Parish.
Bouquets were offered at Speaker Perez’s monument and at his tomb in the old cemetery. Dr. Guido Tiong sang his own composition on the life of Speaker Perez.
Manong Eniong was the first Speaker of the Philippine Republic, and carried on with that post for the first and second congress.
Among the bills he sponsored were of long lasting benefits, among them the creation of the Social Security System, the granting of health benefits to war veterans, the construction of a dike to prevent the Agno River from flooding several towns in Pangasinan, the establishment of the San Carlos General Hospital, now known as the Pangasinan Provincial Hospital.—CSR