Late Inquirer editor-in-chief hailed as among 19 martial law heroes
MANILA — Inquirer’s late editor-in-chief Letty Jimenez-Magsanoc was among 19 “real heroes” memorialized at the Wall of Remembrance at the Bantayog ng mga Bayani Wednesday night for fighting the repressive martial rule.
Magsanoc, who led the Inquirer’s editorial team for 24 years until she passed away on Christmas eve last year, was honored as “a heroine in the struggle against martial law” for standing up to the dictator with her brand of fierce journalism.
The citation for Magsanoc read:
“For unleashing the power of the written word for the common good, for justice, freedom and democracy, for challenging and exposing the excesses of the Marcos dictatorship through the media even at great personal risk;
“For testing the limits of press freedom as writer and editor, for defying media restrictions and censorship under martial rule, and for facing up to the wrath of the dictatorship.
“For encouraging and giving space for bold and daring writers, despite threats from the powers that be, and for speaking truth to power without fear, for her faith in her fellow Filipinos, for placing above herself God, family and country.
“In testimony thereof, the Bantayog ng mga Bayani Foundation hereby recognizes Leticia Jimenez-Magsanoc as a heroine in the struggle against martial law, and hereby honors her by engraving her name on the wall of remembrance on this 30th day of November 2016.”
Magsanoc was instrumental in shaping the Inquirer’s brand of courageous and agenda-setting journalism, shepherding the editorial team towards becoming both a hard-hitting yet, in her own words, “a very feeling newspaper, sensitive to the readers.”
Her family, husband Dr. Carlos Magsanoc, children Kara, Nikko and Marti, Vice President Leni Robredo, other relatives, and colleagues at the Inquirer received the honor for Magsanoc.
The family wore a “Youth in Revolt” protest shirt designed by Magsanoc’s granddaughters Monica and Mica Magsanoc.
Speaking briefly in receiving the honor for his late wife, Dr. Carlos Magsanoc thanked Robredo for gracing the rites, and expressed his thanks for the Bantayog ng mga Bayani Foundation.
“I thank the foundation of the Bantayog ng mga tunay na tunay na bayani ngayon (monument of real heroes now),” he said.
Other honorees during Wednesday’s rites were the late former Senator and statesman Jovito Salonga, the late journalists Antonio L. Zumel and Lourdes Estella-Simbulan, labor leader Simplicio Villados, soldier Danilo Vizmanos, professionals Manuel Dorotan and Ma. Margarita F. Gomez, artist Benjamin H. Cervantes, Julio Labayen, Romulo Peralta and Jose Tangente from the religious sector, and youth leaders during the martial law years Marciano Anastacio Jr., Eduardo Aquino, Fortunato Camus, Hernando Cortez, Edgardo Dojillo, Ricardo Filio, and Joel Jose.
Their names were etched in gold on the granite wall, joining 268 others who had defied dictator Ferdinand Marcos’ martial rule.
The rites, held two weeks since Marcos was secretly buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, was marked by protest, with relatives and colleagues of the honorees chanting “Marcos, Hitler, Diktador, Tuta!” and “Never Again.” SFM
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