Last Sunday I was at the American Cemetery for the Memorial Day ceremonies hosted by the American Embassy. I had the great fortune of meeting real heroes – our few surviving war veterans. I was fortunate to have a picture taken with one of them and I’ll upload it soon so you can see what a genuine hero looks like.
The American Cemetery is located in the heart of for Fort Bonifacio and it is a true oasis in the urban jungle of Manila. According to Ambassador Kenney, the premises is the biggest war memorial and cemetery of its kind, even bigger than the one in Normandy. I have started making arrangements to bring our students at PLM there, not only so they can enjoy the physical beauty of the place – because it is truly beautiful – but also so that they can connect with our nation’s courageous past and to instill a sense of pride and patriotism. To remember that once upon a time, Filipinos stood up against tyrants and were willing to make the ultimate sacrifice in the name of freedom. To remind that real freedom is never without cost and, for us who are the succeeding generations of these war heroes, that our freedom was purchased by their blood and heroism.