When I was a kid growing inside the camp of the Philippine Military Academy I wondered why every Saturday or Sunday there were cadets that ate lunch and spent their afternoon at the houses of our military neighbours.
|FOSTER SISTER. Getting acquainted, Inah Felice had chit-chat with the |
new cadets moments after the foster parent pairing at the military academy.
PHOTO CREDIT: TRIPOD
“They are foster brothers,” a young pretty female neighbour, who became a general in the nurse corps, said to me on the graduating first class cadets.
Many of these cadets came from dirt poor existence in the provinces but catapulted themselves to the elite military school because of their intelligence especially in math in high school.
Some of them married the daughters (their foster sisters) of officers and non officers who stayed at the PMA’s quarters.
One of the cadets, just to stop the inquisitiveness and loquaciousness of a five-year old boy, carried me on his lap to stop my blabber when my lady cousin Darcy invited them inside our house so some of them, who were ilonggos, could met and exchanged pleasantries with my father who hailed from Iloilo City.
“That was Julius Javier (PMA Class 1970 who came from Negros Occidental), he is the goat (the cadet who graduated last in his entire class),” my cousin whispered to me when Javier and classmates bid goodbye.
Javier not only became one of the most popular Army men but became the living hero of the Black Panther Scout Ranger due to his tenacity in fighting the Muslim rebels and the Communist’s guerrillas. He became the commanding general of the dreaded elite commando whose life story was put into the movie "Scout Ranger" in 1979 starred by Karate King Roberto Gonzales, Dante Varona, Philip Gamboa, and others.
|President Ronald Reagan and Bill Clark meeting with|
President Zia-ul-Haq (center) in 1982.