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Malaya editor De los Reyes, ‘renaissance man,’ dies; 59

MANILA, Philippines—Joy Cortes de los Reyes, editor in chief of Malaya Business Insight, died Friday. He was 59.

De los Reyes, who battled cancer for more than a year, died at the Health Centrum Hospital in Roxas City.  His remains lie at his home town of Balete, Aklan, and will be flown to Manila on Tuesday for cremation. A wake will be held from Tuesday to Friday at the University of the Philippines Chapel in Diliman, Quezon City, according to his family.

His ashes will be interred on Saturday at the Columbary of Santo Niño de Cebu San Agustin Seminary on Fisheries St. Visayas Ave., Quezon City, beside those of his wife, Leticia “Jane” Subang, a journalist, too, who died in 2009. It was also in 2009 that he lost his house and most of his material possessions to Tropical Storm “Ondoy.”

De los Reyes was born on Feb. 9, 1954, in Balete, Aklan. He came to Manila after high school in 1970, entering UP Diliman on a science scholarship and enrolling in Mathematics. He joined the Alpha Sigma fraternity. He was a student activist during the days now referred to as the First Quarter Storm. His studies were disrupted with the declaration of martial law in 1972.

He later surfaced and found work in the newspaper industry. He worked his way up from proofreader and editorial assistant at the entertainment desk of the now defunct Daily Express to business reporter at the Times Journal, eventually climbing to business editor of Malaya newspaper and finally its editor in chief.

Meanwhile, he had married and started a family.


Back to school

De los Reyes also worked his way back to school, finishing his philosophy degree at UP. He was in the process of completing his master’s degree when it was discovered he had cancer in 2011.

Among friends, he was proud of his talent in sports—he was a golfer, a sharp shooter and a sailor. De los Reyes was also an art patron. He himself played the guitar and loved music. He was an active member of the Diliman Book Club. He was sociable and loved good wine. He also studied culinary arts and was into baking. He invested in agriculture and animal husbandry in his hometown. He kept up with his friends at after-work hangouts in Malate, among them “The Hobbit House” and “Oar House,” as well as the Quezon City-based Thursday Club, a group of print and broadcast journalists.

“Joy, as Francis Bacon advised, was always true to himself. He was never false to others,” texted Amado “Jake” Macasaet, publisher of Malaya.

“He was multitalented. His model was the renaissance man—a modern one,” said Roberto D. Tangco, associate professor at UP’s philosophy department and a friend of De los Reyes.

“He was a decent man, and a good friend,” added Interior Secretary Mar Roxas.

“His understanding of issues was deep, which made him a good editor, said Malaya columnist and top Internet blogger Ellen Tordesillas.

De los Reyes is survived by his mother, Ida Feleciano Cortes-de los Reyes, his siblings Gay, Rex, Lito, Leo and Vanessa Cortes de los Reyes and his children Antonio Isabelo, Aida Corazon and Jose Socrates.  Monica Feria

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Tags: Death Notice , Journalist , Joy Cortes de los Reyes , joy de los reyes , newspaper , obituary

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