Quantcast
Latest Stories

Rizal kin move out of crowded city cemetery

By

DR. JOSE RIZAL. INQUIRER file photo

SAN PEDRO, Laguna—In one of the oldest and largest cemeteries in Metro Manila, the dead crowd with the living.

Space is running out in Manila North Cemetery that the relatives of national hero Dr. Jose Rizal had no recourse but to have the remains of his sister, Narcisa Alonso Rizal, and her family exhumed and transferred to Laguna province after more than 70 years.

“We try to avoid the crowd by visiting a day after [the observance of the All Souls’ Day], but Manila North Cemetery is still too crowded and rowdy,” said Jose Rizal Lopez II, an 89-year-old Rizal descendant.

At his age, he said, he could no longer bear the crowd.

Ester Lopez-Azurin, 60, a great-grandniece of Rizal, recalled a visit they made to the family’s mausoleum in Manila when they found folding beds and transistor radios left behind by squatters.

“You could not even finish [reciting] one ‘Our Father’ without being disturbed by people offering services to sweep the tombs,” she said.

Without much fanfare, the Rizal clan on June 8 had the bones of Narcisa exhumed, cremated and transferred to the General Paciano Rizal Shrine in Los Baños, Laguna, on June 15 and 16.

Also exhumed and transferred from Manila North Cemetery were the remains of seven other family members: Narcisa’s husband Antonino Manapat Lopez and their three children Emilio, Consuelo and Antonio; Antonio’s wife Emiliana Dacena Rizal; and their two sons Francisco I and Jose I.

Emiliana was  the daughter of Paciano, the national hero’s only brother, with  Severina Dacena. She was married to Antonio, her first cousin.

The family would have wanted a simple, private burial, but the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) suggested a more elaborate reinterment, complete with a vigil and procession from the Rizal Shrine in Calamba City to Los Baños on June 16. The NHCP also scheduled the reinterment in time for the 152nd birth anniversary of the national hero on June 19.

Simple man

“We wanted it simple, just as my grandfather was—very low-profile,” Lopez said of Paciano. Lopez is a son of Emiliana and Antonio, making him a direct descendant of both Paciano and Narcisa.

After the revolution, Paciano lived a quiet life as a farmer in Los Baños until he died in 1930. His remains and those of his two other sisters, Josefa and Trinidad, were reinterred at the General Paciano Rizal Shrine in 1988.

“Very little was written about him and very few knew that he was responsible for so many things,” Lopez said, citing the elder brother’s support for Rizal’s education abroad.

Lopez said his siblings remembered their grandfather looking out from his home’s balcony, admiring the lights in Calamba.

They also remember a stingy Paciano who, whenever he visited his siblings in Manila, would demonstrate how strict he was about spending by objecting to being served several viands, Lopez said.

Narcisa, on the other hand, was the supportive sister who wrote Rizal news about the family and the country during the hero’s travels and exiles. One story was that Narcisa was the one who found the grave of Rizal in Paco, Manila. She carried a marble slab with Rizal’s initials “RPJ” and bribed a caretaker at the cemetery to mark her brother’s grave with it.

The General Paciano Rizal Shrine remains a private property of the Lopezes, although visits can be arranged with the family.

“We want to keep a personal touch to it,” Lopez said, noting that his parents and grandparents’ remains would now be better taken care of in  the private shrine.

Professor Dwight Diestro, University of the Philippines Los Baños Social Science Department chair, said the transfer of the remains could ensure the “continuity” of the family’s traditions, although he would rather that the heroes’ graves become more accessible to the public.

“Families should offer their children to the nation,” he said.

First posted 10:10 pm | Saturday, June 22nd, 2013


Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: cemetery , Dr. Jose Rizal , History , Jose Rizal , Laguna , Manila North Cemetery Dr. Jose Rizal , Narcisa Alonso Rizal , National Hero , Paciano Rizal , Philippine history , Rizal




Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  2. Opinions split on Napoles turning state witness
  3. Delfin Lee: Blame Pag-Ibig, not me
  4. Plunder complaint filed vs PNP chief, firearms office head over license delivery deal
  5. Cedric Lee’s cohort flies out of PH despite look-out order – De Lima
  6. San Juan cops fail to arrest Cedric Lee
  7. More ‘Yolanda’ bodies found
  8. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  9. Lawyer: Napoles ‘will tell all’
  10. Boy ‘sexually assaulted’ at Indonesia international school
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Estrada: Gigi Reyes won’t testify vs JPE
  3. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  4. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  5. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  6. Bernice Lee arrested by NBI team
  7. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  8. Suspect in Vhong Navarro’s mauling wants to turn state witness – De Lima
  9. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  10. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  8. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  9. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
  10. Ex-PBA player Bryan Gahol dies in road mishap
Advertisement

News

  • Napoles tags over 100 officials in pork scam – Lacson
  • Vitangcol to sue Czech envoy
  • Senator’s kickback from pork bigger than those of Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – Lacson
  • 43 out of 414 Etihad passengers yet to be found, tested for MERS-CoV – Palace
  • Maid confesses in killing of 2 and stabbing of employer in Laguna
  • Sports

  • San Mig Coffee grinds out win over Alaska to force decider
  • UP nips St. Benilde; Adamson blasts RTU in Filoil women’s caging
  • Kevin Garnett responds to Raptors’ GM F word
  • Albert Pujols hits 500th HR of major league career
  • UST posts twin kill in Filoil pre-season cup opening day
  • Lifestyle

  • Entering the monkhood a rite of passage
  • Haneda International Airport: A destination on its own
  • Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  • Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  • Life lessons I want to teach my son
  • Entertainment

  • Bollywood Oscars, film stars come to Florida
  • Ex-Fox exec denies allegations in sex abuse suit
  • Kris Aquino backtracks, says Herbert Bautista and her are ‘best friends’
  • Summer preview: Chris Pratt enters a new ‘Galaxy’
  • Bon Jovi helps open low-income housing in US
  • Business

  • SM to rebuild Tacloban hospital
  • PSEi slips after 4-day rally
  • Toyota sells 2.58 million vehicles, outselling GM
  • McDonald’s 1Q profit slips as US sales decline
  • SEC approves SM’s P15B retail bond offer
  • Technology

  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Viber releases new design for iPhone, comes to Blackberry 10 for the first time
  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Bam Aquino becomes Master Splinter’s son after Wiki hack
  • Mark Caguioa lambasts Ginebra teammates on Twitter
  • Opinion

  • One-dimensional diplomacy: A cost-benefit analysis of Manila’s security deal with Washington
  • No ordinary illness
  • Reforest mountains with fire trees and their kind
  • Day of the Earth
  • When will Chinese firm deliver new coaches?
  • Global Nation

  • Filipinos coming home from Mideast must obtain MERS clearance – DOH
  • US Secret Service in Manila ahead of Obama visit
  • Palace thanks Estrada for successful HK mission
  • Hong Kong accepts PH apology; sanctions also lifted
  • China won’t budge, wants PH gov’t to apologize to HK
  • Marketplace
    Advertisement