Mendoza, ex-intel chief, a cop till last breath
BUGALLON, Pangasinan — The man credited for uncovering terror plots, including a purported assassination plan on Pope John Paul II in Manila, will be buried here on Saturday.
Retired Director Rodolfo “Boogie” Mendoza, former chief of the Philippine National Police intelligence unit, died from multiple organ failure due to diabetes at a hospital in Lingayen town on March 28. He was 64.
Evelyn, Mendoza’s widow, described him as a “very secretive man” who kept his health condition to himself.
Although he had been retired for the last 10 years, Mendoza had been a consultant for an antiterrorism project at Camp Crame, the national headquarters of the PNP.
Plot to kill Pope
A member of Philippine Military Academy “Makatarungan” Class of 1978, Mendoza drew public attention for his role in unraveling a plot to kill Pope John Paul II during the papal visit to Manila in 1995.
But media also credited him for his intelligence work against communist rebels.
“He never stopped working and everything he did was connected to police matters,” Evelyn said at her husband’s wake in the family residence at Barangay Poblacion here.
She said her husband wished to be buried beside his mother’s grave.
“He had been working hard until December last year. But I insisted that he should go home so we could take care of him. He looked strong days before he died,” she said.
Former PNP chief, Director General Arturo Lomibao, said Mendoza was known to his friends and enemies as a “dyed-in-the-wool intelligence officer, hardcore, psywar expert and inveterate patriot.”
‘Master of disinformation’
If Mendoza “was not fiddling with phone numbers and extrapolating with link diagrams, he was analyzing documents and writing reports,” Lomibao said on a Facebook post.
“He was a walking encyclopedia as far as top-ranking communist personalities and Muslim extremists are concerned,” said Lomibao, who is also from Pangasinan.
Mendoza would sometimes be labeled as “a master of disinformation but that too was part of the territory,” Lomibao said.
“He may have retired but he continued to be in touch with local and foreign counterparts to exchange vital information when major terrorist incidents occurred,” he said.
Mendoza is survived by Evelyn and their children, Rhodessa, 34; Rhodora Maramba, 32; and twin sons Rexie and Rexor, 20, and granddaughter Aeion Clair.
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