Archives - 2006

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                                 Christmas Message

Dec. 20, 2006 - "The manger at Bethlehem helps us see the ultimate mystery surrounding our lives ....... It unveils that at the heart of this world is One who has utter compassion and love for all."  With joyful hearts, let us thank God for His love as shown in the manger at Bethlehem.

 

Christmas Prayer
by Robert Louis Stevenson

Loving Father, help us remember the birth of Jesus,
that we may share in the song of the angels,
the gladness of the shepherds, and worship of the wise men.

Close the door of hate and open the door of love all over the world.
Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.
Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings,
and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.

May the Christmas morning bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts,
forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus' sake.  Amen

Merry Christmas

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Welcome to the Batch, Jane Feliciano Fernandez

Dec. 13, 2006 - For our batch mates who have been wondering about the whereabouts of Jane Feliciano, we are happy to report that Jane has just touched base with us thru our website.  We still remember with fondness, the parties that our batch used to have in the residence of Jane at Dr. Lazcano St. in Quezon City.  She really was one terrific party organizer during our high school days.  You can read all about Jane in our Profiles page.  Just click her name.

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Reunion of USTHS'68 NorthEast Batch

Dec. 12, 2006 - Our U.S. NorthEast based batch mates finally had their very first reunion last month as reported by Ray Protacio. 

"We had our first reunion here in NJ last month at the Crab House Seafood Restaurant in Edgewater, NJ, the place is by the Hudson River overlooking Manhattan. Those who were able to attend were Mike Mendonez and Grace; Peck Pecana and Marie; Fred Andes; Tim Mendonez; myself (Rey Protacio) and Mel. Merle Cruz-Encarnacioan was not able to attend because of her busy schedule (she had a two day seminar or retreat with the Bukas Loob sa Diyos, BLD NEWARK), Annie Viri-Pazcoguin had to look after her community service of sort doing blood pressure screening in her church (if I remember correctly).

Anyway, we had a sumptuous dinner and as always it was a never ending reminiscent reunion even though only five of us from batch 68 were there plus three better-halves, we had a great great time. We started at 5pm and at about 10pm Mike and Grace, Peck and Marie went to our place in Fort Lee, NJ and continued our merriment.
Anyway, everybody hopes that something better will be next, if any of our batchmates
reads this and lives in the Northeast area please contact anyone from us, Rey Protacio, Fred Andes, Mike and Tim Mendonez, Peck Pecana, Merle Cruz-Encarnacion, Annie Viri-Pazcoguin, please visit our website and look for their contact addresses and tel. nos.

The bottom line of our meeting is that everyone of us in the northeast will be a coordinator and maybe we will create a committee to oversee our functions which is primarily we dubbed as "pay-back time" to the land where we came from and help the poor.  As agreed upon Red Andes will be our lead coordinator here in the northeast.  Stay healthy guys and we will keep in touch. - Rey Protacio, Northeast USTHS'68

Here are some pictures shared by Tim Mendonez. (Please click the pictures to view the full image):

 

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2006 Batch Christmas Party

Dec. 9, 2006 -  The Christmas party of USTHS batch ’68 can be best described as SUPERFUN. Held at the Roofdeck of Garbrielle 3 Condominium at the heart of the Ortigas Center last December 2, 2006 the get-together is a glimpse of what the Ruby anniversary shall be!!!  For details, please visit our Reunion page.

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Final Plans for 2006 Christmas Party

Nov. 19, 2006 - We will hold our 2006 Christmas Party at Gabrielle III Condominium (Roof deck) located at San Miguel Avenue, Ortigas Center, beside Linden Suites.  Hereunder are the details:

          Date: December 2,2006 (Saturday)

         Time: 5 p.m. onwards

Free of charge.  To our generous batch mates, you may bring some gifts for door prizes and party games.  PLEASE COME AND HAVE FUN!!!

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A Fund-Raising Dinner Dance for the Holy Rosary Parish in Antioch, California

Nov. 1, 2006 - Odette Wallace gave us an update of the recent fund raising dinner dance hosted by the Fil-Am Association of the Holy Rosary Parish in Antioch, California, the President of which, is Leni Sabio (Enrie Samson Sabio's husband). Some of Enrie's high school barkada including Odette, attended the said event.

"Oct. 31, 2006 - Enrie reminded me to have this North Cal party posted because she wants Josie Illescas to see that her brother (batch '67) looks well. In fact he was very much involved in this church fundraising event. Her husband,Lennie Sabio was the president this year of the Fil-Am association of the Holy Rosary Parish in Antioch, California. Enrie gave full time work as well in soliciting those prizes and program donors. They host feeding programs for the homeless plus other endless list of charitable gift-giving. Enrie sold the most tickets that night even though most of her high school batch could not make it. We really had a 4-hour work-out on the dance floor. Other attendees were Cynthia Prinsipe, Cherry Ramirez and Mike Illescas. See you soon." - Odette Wallace

Here are the pictures sent by Odette.  Please click the pictures to view the full image.

L-R: Odette's Mom, Enrie, Odette & Cherry

Standing: Odette & Enrie: Seated: Cherry & Cynthia

Enrie & Leni Sabio with Odette on the dance floor

Nonstop dancing

L-R: Nes Mendoza, Kris, Enrie, Odette, Mike Illescase and Odette's Mom

Enrie and Cherry posing for Leni

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Batch Mate Gani Buenaflor featured in Manila Bulletin

October 21, 2006 - Our batch mate Isagani G. Buenaflor, one of the country's successful entrepreneur/CEO, was recently featured in the Business Profiles Section of the Manila Bulletin, in its October 11, issue.  As Albert Buenviaje wrote in his text message to him after he read the article, "Pare ang guwapo mo sa Bulletin Today. Hindi mo kamukha. Pero dati na akong bilib sa iyo lalo tuloy akong bumilib sa iyo." To our batchmates para na ninyong awa pakibasa naman ang article about Gani. 

On a more serious note, Gani's story is worthy of emulation by everyone including our kids.  The article speaks concretely of the need for hard work and ingenuity to be successful in anything that you do. "Kung may tiyaga, may nilaga."  (Click here to read the full feature about Gani.)  

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NorthCal Batch Get-Together in Napa

Oct. 18, 2006 - The planned regrouping of our batchmates from Northern California pushed through last Oct. 14 (Friday).  In her latest e-mail, Odette recounted their latest happening, and shared some pictures of their afternoon of fun and camaraderie.

"Oct. 16, 2006 - Last Saturday Oct 14, we had a great get together in my house here in Napa. The leaves are starting to turn yellow and orange and soon it will be much cooler . But we had a very soothing temperature and a sunny day. Batchmates travelled from San Francisco, Sacramento and Antioch. Chito brought his brother visiting from Bangkok, his home made arroz caldo and adobong peanuts. Al made his low calorie biko and brought his wife, Donna. Helen brought her mom and home made bibingka. Enrie brought her mom in law and some laing and lechon kawali. Cherry made a surprise appearance with her hubby. It was the first time for Lynn (formerly Rosalinda Po) to attend. She brought her home made macaroni salad and her hubby, Timo. The three moms automatically bonded and got engaged in their own exchange of experiences.

I made dinuguan, kaldereta, marinated beet salad with feta cheese , braised catfish Vietnamese style , pumpkin roll and fresh fruit for dessert. Of course, I had barako gold coffee too.

It was such a fun time as always with Chito's collection of jokes and repertoires.

The spouses seemed to be well-adjusted now to the group that somehow they know how to entertain themselves when we get self-absorbed in our recollections of high school days.

Time went by so fast because it gets dark fast now so parang kulang ang good time. Unlike last June when we did not stop til almost 9 because we got to dance and sing after the usual photo session.

Salbaheng Chito whispered to me "don’t worry Odette, balang araw we will be one happy family kasi pakakasalan ko ang mommy mo".

I also got them updated on what was taken up and decided on our last get together at John Tan's last month. I started to collect the $10.00 donation to our fund and hopefully the other groups in Toronto and LA will follow through. I informed them that we took a vote last meeting on the purpose of the fund. Please correct me if I am wrong but didn’t we all agree that the beneficiary of our fund will be needy batchmates in need of medical assistance ? Another thing - those wanting to go to Boracay and other points of interest would like to ask assistance on accommodation and transportation. Our website should start to give those answers.

Next week I will meet the batch again in a fundraising event that Enrie is a part of . It will be a dinner dance in Antioch.

Love from the batch here and they are all looking forward to February 2008. - Odette Wallace

Here are the pictures sent by Odette.  Please click the pictures to view the full image.

Enrie brought her mom in law.

Donna (Albert's wife), Odette, Cherrie,Lynn, Enrie and Helen

Odette & Mommy

L-R: Chito, Odette, Lynn, Helen, Cherry, Enrie & Albert

Chito & Albert

Albert & Helen, busy picking grapes

Albert with his freshly picked bunch of grapes

Albert & Donna

Lynn & husband, Timo

Cherry & husband

Cherry, Chito & Enrie

Ned (Chito's brother) met up with his friends too

The three Moms with the batch'68

Helen and Lynn

Cherry, Odette, Helen & Lynn

A Jinggoy Estrada look-alike

The harvest table

Standing (L-R): Odette, Chito, Lynn, Helen, Enrie, Donna & Albert

Seated: (L-R): Odette's Mom, Enrie's Mother in law & Lynn's Mom

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SoCal Batch Invites You

Oct. 6, 2006 - Bing Macavinta sent the following e-mail re the planned Christmas Party for SoCal Batch'68:

     "Please mark your calendar & reserve the day (& the weekend) as we again join in with the Class of ’69 to celebrate the Christmas season:

• When: Saturday, December 2nd
• Where: Holiday Inn – Burbank
• Time: 6:00 p.m. – 12:00 a.m.
• Attire: elegant / dressy casual
• Cost: $50

It will be an evening of music, food, dancing, singing, entertainment & simply fun!!! For those out-of-towners, a block of rooms can be reserved at a discounted rate--- let us know early, so an arrangement can be made. Please email your note of interest or reservation to Bing Macavinta at oksendit2me@yahoo.com, Raffy Eusebio at  raeuse@yahoo.com, Ernie Morales at embase@gmail.com  or JV Omaña at jomana@sbcglobal.net  as early as possible (to coordinate with the chair-person of batch ’69, Lydia Aguilar). Hope to see a few of you, if not many."

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NorthCal Batch'68 Regrouping

Oct. 4, 2006 - We received the following e-mail from Odette Wallace regarding another planned gathering of our batch mates from Northern California:

"Oct. 2, 2006 - Batch 68 NorthCal will be regrouping on the 14th October starting with late lunch till "sawa". Please come and join us for food, singing , dancing and update of the coming prep for the ruby celebration, our 40th come 2008. The address is 5510 Silverado Trail, Napa. Telephone 707-256-3331 0r 707-363-3005. Hope to see you here. Please contact Chito Cardenas for details 415-8263627( for transport problems and other problems!) - Odette Wallace"

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The Alimagno’s Visit with the SoCal Batch

Sept. 25, 2006 - Ed Alimagno and his wife Connie were given a warm welcome  by our SoCal batch mates.  As usual, Bing Macavinta, the designated PRO of the group, gave us the latest news in her recent e-mail. (Thanks Bing, for keeping us up to date on the latest happenings there.)

"9/23/2006 7:42:38 PM – local time -  Manila batch mate, Edgar Alimagno is in town with his charming wife, Connie, visiting their two daughters here in Southern California. As I’m writing this, they are now in San Francisco visiting the town, Connie’s own batch mates, and of course, our NorCal buddies.

Some of the guys, who live in what we call, the San Fernando Valley (NW of L.A.) and works around or near L.A., had their get-together at Todai in Glendale (a Japanese Buffet place), last Wednesday, Sept 19th. Those that made that lunch date were: Joseph Bautista, Cesar Balbontin, Raffy Eusebio, Junnie Navarro (who’s becoming a regular—just wonderful!), Chito Pangilinan & our ever faithful member, “skinny” Ernie Morales. You can always count on Ernie to be there. JV & I have almost had a perfect attendance (just missed 2 since we began our SoCal group; Raffy has tried very hard as well—there you have the “core” team).

In addition, the guys had a round of golf at the Brookside Golf Course in Pasadena.
For us, on the east side of L.A. had ours last evening, Friday, Sept 22nd. We held ours at Asia Buffet in City of Industry. Friday of course, being the beginning of a weekend, is simply an extremely busy day to navigate around town, let alone across town. However, we were all able to make it to the place in considerable time. Ernie Morales picked up Ed & Connie & got there on time. I came in very shortly after. Jojo Constantino, from the ’69 batch, but very much a part of us, joined us as well. And JV Omana, who got tied up with last minute location project came later. The place does get crowded. Fortunately, it was a light crowd last evening, so it was easy to talk and to get your servings easily.

Then, from there we proceeded to the Eusebio’s residence- Raffy’s & Lottie’s. On the way there, Connie, who has such an upbeat personality, offered to ride with me. Ed rode with JV, and Ernie.  When we got there, Pancho Tabora was already there. It was so good to see him again! It’s been a while.

Work schedule & other family extra curricular affairs have oftentimes made it impossible to be always available for this occasional get-together, especially when it’s a last-minute notice. But in the midst of it all, we, each try to accommodate and fit in the time with & for our co-Thomasians. Those occasional moments bring in nostalgic memories and sense of continuity from our long distant adolescent beginnings. And to witness how each of us have gracefully grown into our golden years and see how we have held our own through thick & thin, have truly been, a wonderful & blessed experience!

To our Manila, US, Canadian batch mates and to those elsewhere in the world —Please make sure to let us know when you’ll be in SoCal. We’re just an email away. It would be our pleasure to treat you to a get-together." -
Bing Macavinta

And now, here are some pictures of The Aligmano’s visit:

Cesar Balbontin, Joseph Bautista, Ed & Connie Aligmano & Junnie Navarro

Raffy Eusebio & Ernie Morales joined in

And now Chito Pangilinan gets in the picture. Looks like Ernie was taking the shot

Okay guys you seem to be enjoying looking at those “hotties” that are in Chito’s photography collection

Sorry Cesar, caught red-handed looking closely at those “young chicks” (I know that Lynn is a good sport)

Bing taking a picture

with a beer & glass of wine, we’re set!

note those yummy “Hor’s Douvres”

“And him, believe me, he is bad----“

"Really?"

Presenting our Golf Pros: Ed & Ernie

Ed & Jojo Constantino (batch '69)

The '68 batch Golfers

Our golfer finishing a shot & his caddy behind :)

Putting to finish

One more from our Pros

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Plans for the 40th Ruby Anniversary in 2008

Sept.19, 2006 -  Last Sept. 17, 2006, during the dinner held at John Tan's residence for Chito Cardenas, those who attended the said event took the opportunity to discuss the activities for the batch's 40th Ruby anniversary in 2008.  Various committees were formed to handle the important tasks for the said event.  It was agreed that the overall Chair Person for the anniversary celebration is Bebet Gozun, with Don Mejia as Assistant Chair Person. 

In order to accommodate the request of our foreign-based batch mates who are coming over for the big event, it was decided that the anniversary celebration  will be a two-day affair, to be held on Feb. 15-16, 2008 (Friday & Saturday). (Note:  Please mark this now on your calendars.) An out-of-town day trip will be held on Feb. 15, which will include the Batch'68 together with their families.  The following day, Feb. 16, will be the culminating affair, which will be capped with an informal dinner and dance party.  For those batch mates who would like to explore other vacation spots in the country, alternative and optional out-of-town package trips will be offered especially to our balikbayan batch mates.  For the proposed batch outreach, Odette Wallace suggested that whatever funds we can raise, we can use to meet the medical needs of our batch mates who are having financial difficulty.  This will be in lieu of the earlier proposed scholarship to the deserving children of our batch mates since the group noted that most of the children of our batch have already finished schooling.

It was estimated that the total cost of the two-day event will amount to about P300,000.00.  In order to encourage more attendees, it was decided that instead of charging on a per head basis, the batch will solicit funds to raise the said amount.  As early as now, we are open to contributions by our generous batch mates to meet our target. To be more affordable, instead of one lump sum payment, the committee in charge of fund raising will be more than willing to accommodate a pledge of a monthly contribution.  Remittances may be made to the following account, (or alternatively, you can contact any of the Finance Committee members so they can arrange for the pick-up of your donation): 

Name of Bank/Branch



 
    Philippine Bank of Communications (PBCom)
    Corinthian Gardens Branch
    Sanso St. Corinthian Gardens
    Quezon City
 
Account Number    Savings Account No. 242-10-000357-4
Account Name    Elizabeth De Guzman or John Tan
Bank Code for Foreign Remittances    CPHIPHMM

 The following are the various committees formed for the 40th anniversary celebration and the deadlines set for the completion of their particular tasks:

Committee Persons In Charge Activities to be Undertaken Deadline
Venue

 

 

 

Peter So, Bebet Gozun and Plut Cardenas

 

 

 

The group will have an ocular inspection of Anthony Dee's resort in Pampanga, the proposed site for the out-of-town day trip  and the UST High School hall for the culminating dinner on the last day.  Other alternative venues will be looked into. Feb. 2007

 

 

 

Programs and Events

 

Odette Wallace, Bebet Gozun, Chito Cardenas, George Tadena, Renee Nolasco and Tessa Sierra The group will design the program of activities to be undertaken during the two-day affair.  They will also take charge of emceeing the events. March 2007

 

 

Finance and Fund Raising

 

 

 

Chito Cardenas, Odette Wallace, Ernie Morales  and Batch Cuyugan - for Foreign Based Batch Mates

John Tan and Albert Buenviaje - for Phil. based batch mates

 

In charge of raising the necessary funds to finance the costs involved for the 40th anniversary celebration and the proper allocation of the funds raised.

 

 

July 2007

 

 

 

 

Invitation and Announcements

 

 

 

Chito Cardenas, Odette Wallace, Ernie Morales and Bach Cuyugan - for foreign based batch mates

Don Mejia,  Lorna Buenviaje, Baby Balatbat De Guzman and Ricky Yatco - for Phil. based batch mates

The group is in charge of disseminating information about the 40th anniversary celebration in print and t.v. media and  inviting as many members of the batch as possible.

 

 

July 2007 - Dec. 2007

 

 

 

 

Food Baby Balatbat De Guzman and Josie Illescas In charge of providing food and refreshments during the two-day affair. Feb. 2008

 

We are open to other batch mates who would want to volunteer their services to ensure the success of our 40th anniversary celebration.  Kindly contact Bebet Gozun (Cellphone no.:  09175305854) or Don Mejia (Cellphone No: +639209241801).  Let us all work hand in hand to make our 40th year a fruitful and unforgettable year.  Go Batch'68!!!!

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Dinner for Chito Cardenas

Sept.19, 2006 -  Last Sept. 17, 2006, Sunday, a group of Batch '68 treated Chito Cardenas to a pot-luck dinner held at the residence of John Tan in Greenhills.  Those who attended were Odette Wallace, Bebet Gozun, Plut Cardenas with his wife Pearlie, Albert and Lorna Buenviaje, Renee De Los Reyes Nolasco and her husband Boy, George Tadena, Peter So, Bach Cuyugan,  Don Mejia and of course, the host, John Tan with his beautiful and gracious wife, Ruby.  Chito came with his eldest son, Ivan, who is presently connected with United Air Lines.  As usual, during the entire evening, Chito never ran out of his colorful jokes, which were complemented by George Tadena's own set of irreverent anecdotes. Of course, the evening wouldn't be complete without the usual videoke singing led by Bach Cuyugan, who showed a sample of his vocal wares.  Others followed suit.

Those present took the opportunity to discuss the activities for the batch's 40th Ruby anniversary in 2008.  Various committees were formed to handle the important tasks for the said event.  You can read the details in our Plans and Programs page.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank John and Ruby Tan for being such gracious hosts.

Chito will again be feted with  another dinner on Friday, Sept. 22, 2006 at around 6 p.m. at the residence of Baby Balatbat De Guzman in Corinthian Gardens.  Everyone is invited.  It will be a potluck dinner. 

Here are some pictures taken last Sept.17.  (Please click the photo to view an enlarged version)

Seated (L-R): Lorna & Albert Buenviaje, Ruby Tan, Chito Cardenas, George Tadena (partly hidden), Pearlie & Plut Cardenas, Boy & Renee Nolasco (partly hidden), Ivan Cardenas (Chito's son), Bebet Gozun & Odette Wallace

Standing: John Tan & Bach Cuyugan

Cheers for Chito!!! (Seated L-R): John Jr. (John's son), Lorna & Albert Buenviaje, Chito Cardenas, Bebet Gozun, Pearlie & Plut Cardenas & Ivan Cardenas (Chito's son)

Standing (L-R): John Tan, Don Mejia, Peter So, Odette Wallace, George Tadena, Bach Cuyugan, Boy & Renee Nolasco and Ruby Tan (John;s wife)

L-R: Ruby Tan, Renee Nolasco, Lorna Buenviaje, Odette Wallace, Bebet Gozun and Pearlie Cardenas

Standing (L-R): Peter So, Albert Buenviaje, Don Mejia, Chito Cardenas, John Tan, George Tadena, Bach Cuyugan & Plut Cardenas

Seated (L-R): Renee Nolasco, Lorna Buenviaje, Odette Wallace & Bebet Gozun

Another shot, this time facing another camera!

Bach Cuyugan giving a sample of his vocal wares to Chito, Odette & Pearlie

Let me sing first!! (Boy Nolasco & Plut Cardenas wrestling over the plug to the microphone. Looking on were Bebet Gozun, Don Mejia & Albert Buenviaje)

Teka, asan ba yong mga kapanahunan ko? (George Tadena seriously going over the song book. With him were Pearlie & Bebet)

George, still at it!! Looking on were Boy & Renee Nolasco (seated) and Odette Wallace (standing)

Another song number from Bach, with Chito listening intently.

Hay naku George, it will take you ages before you can choose your song. Una na lang kami! (Bebet Gozun and Ruby Tan about to sing their favorite song. Beside George is Odette Wallace. Further back is Pearlie Cardenas)

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SoCal Batch Welcomed Las Vegas Batch Mate Alicia Dominguez- Testa

Sept. 11, 2006 - Our SoCal batch hosted a welcome dinner for Las Vegas-based batch mate Alicia Dominguez Testa last Sept. 6, 2006.  Bing Macavinta's e-mail gives us an account of their get-together.

Sept. 9, 2006 - "It was Chito Cardenas, who made it possible to connect with Alicia (who is the sister of Canadian batch mate Zeny Dominguez- Baluyot). I got in touch with Alicia, our SoCal group & what followed, are these pictures you see.

Getting together on a week night is somewhat tough, so the participation is likely to be few. And indeed, there were just a few of us who made it last Wednesday, Sept 6th. But it’s the only available time Alicia had in her short visit to SoCal. In attendance to welcome Alicia were: Cory Gillera, Ernie Morales, JV Omana, Raffy Eusebio, Chito Pangilinan, Junnie Navarro and me. We met at BJ’s Restaurant & Brewery in Arcadia, which was a fair distance to those of us who could make it.

Here are some shots from Ernie’s camera & mine (with dates). Chito also took pictures from his professional Cannon camera. So, when I get those copies, I’ll send them too." - Bing Macavinta

Here are the pictures sent by Bing.  Please click the pictures to view the full image.

Cory, Bing, Guest of Honor - Alicia Dominguez Testa & Chito

Chito P taking some shots of the ladies

Alicia with Raffy, Junnie & JV

Alicia & Raffy

Junnie & Chito

JV, Junnie & Chito

Alicia and JV

Chito,Junnie, Raffy & JV

The honoree - Alicia Dominguez Testa

Seated: Bing, Cory & Alicia

Standing (L-R): JV, Raffy, Junnie, Ernie & Chito

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Latest News from Home

Sept. 9, 2006 - Odette Wallace shared with us the latest news about the get-together of our batchmates.

Sept. 8, 2006 - "Here is the latest...  Last August 30,2006 , we had a last minute decision to "just dance" and touch base after a long lull. Bebet, Rene and hubby Boy, myself, John and Ruby Tan plus a happy joiner from batch '69 Fiscal George Cabanilla went to Funside in Tomas Morato, Quezon City. After a month of being in a knee brace due to a ligament tear, I was dying to exercise painlessly. And dancing was the answer. Of course it was frustrating to be there and not really be able to dance. But the camaraderie of the group was enough to boost me up.

Then a few days after that, I got an email from Chito Cardenas saying he was coming for an emergency trip to Manila because his brother died and requested to see batchmates for the final night, a Saturday. Lots of batchmates attended to be with Chito.

By Wednesday Sept 6, we regrouped for dance and dinner night at Ultra Bykes in Pasong Tamo, Makati from 6 pm to midnight. That was a lot of dancing. This morning I got back icing my knee at the therapist because I strained my knee again. hehe.

It is really hard to stop dancing! Chito with his usual "baon" of jokes entertained the group. He can't enjoy the services of a D.I. because there is absence of "eye contact ". Oh well, these guys are hard to please unlike the girls. One foxtrot is enough to perk us up. Many more activities are coming like the trip to the anthurium farm in Lipa (with Chito's friend from college, Gerry Bote), the out of town trip for Ed Alimagno's birthday to be held at his resort in Cabuyao and one more dinner or lunch pa daw before Chito leaves for SFO. Meanwhile here are some pictures....." - Odette Wallace

Here are the pictures shared by Odette. (Please click the photo to view an enlarged version):

Dancing at Funside in Morato

Chito and family at Arlington Memorial in Q.C.

Our batchmates with Chito at Arlington Memorial in Q.C. during the wake of Chito's brother

At Bykes in Makati, from left to right: Renee' Nolasco, Chito Cardenas, Bebet Gozun, Ruby and John Tan

Chito and Renee reliving the 70s disco era

Odette with Ambassador Rosal of SFO

Bebet with Nestor , the DI from Bykes

From 6 to midnight dancing at Bykes. From left to right: Boy and Renee Nolasco, Chito Cardenas, Ruby Tan (John Tan's wife) and Odette

John Tan dancing with a DI from Bykes

L-R: Ruby, Chito, Renee, Boy Nolasco, John, Odette, Ambassador Delia Rosal (former Consul gen in SFO),and Myrna a visitor from LA)

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2nd Get-Together of Canadian Batch Mates

Sept. 3, 2006 - Our Canadian-based batch mates had their second get-together last August 26, 2006 at the home of Nic Navarro in Mississauga.  In her e-mail, Marie Rañoa Roque shared with us the details of their mini-reunion complete with photos.

Sept. 1, 2006 - "The Canuck contingent had another reunion on 26th August at the home of Nic Navarro in Mississauga. The usual suspects came (Zeny Dominguez Baluyot and her husband, Danny, Cesar Fernandez, Ricky Dizon, Jessie Salonga), joined by Connie Romana Saavedra, and Efren Villa (who travelled a good 5 hours from Ottawa). It's funny but since all the guys belonged to the same Section B (B for "Best" and the only grad class with the cotillion -- yah! yah!), they share a lot of commonalities. With Efren around, some not known juicy classroom tidbits were revealed, although their antics were truly not bad at all. Everyone had a good laugh -- indeed a time very well spent!
We are still trying to contact other batch mates whom we've ascertained to live in Toronto suburbs. We will soon plan our next reunion (November most likely) so the more, the merrier. " -
Marie Rañoa Roque
 

Here are the pictures sent by Marie.  Please click the pictures to view the full image.

Marie, Connie, Zeny, Danny, Ricky, Nic, Efren & Cesar

Danny & Zeny (Dominguez) Baluyot, Marie (Ranoa) Roque, Cesar Fernandez, Efren Villa & Ricky Dizon

Danny & Zeny (Dominguez) Baluyot, Marie (Ranoa) Roque, Cesar Fernandez, Efren Villa, Jessie Salonga, Nic Navarro & Ricky Dizon

 

Nic Navarro, Efren Villa & Cesar Fernandez

Front: Efren Villa, Cesar Fernandez & Jessie Salonga

2nd Row: Danny & Zeny (Dominguez) Baluyot

Top: Nic Navarro & Ricky Dizon

Front: Jessie, Efren, Danny & Zeny

Back: Nic and his wife, Miriam, Cesar and Ricky

First row: Jessie, Cesar & Nic. 2nd row: Efren & Ricky

 

Connie (seated), Efren, Marie, Zeny, Ricky, Nic, Cesar & Danny

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Condolence to Chito Cardenas and Family on the Death of Their Brother

August 31, 2006 - Our condolence to our batch mate Chito Cardenas and his family, on the death of his brother, Marlito, who used to work with the DENR. His remains lie in state at the Arlington Cemetery in Quezon City.  Let us all pray for the eternal repose of his soul.

Chito flew in from the U.S. last Wednesday to pay his last respects to his brother.

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Liway Geronimo's Birthday Bash

August 18, 2006 - Last August 11 (Friday) Liway Geronimo celebrated her  birthday at the clubhouse of Galeria with some batch mates.  Reggie De Los Reyes Nolasco, shared with us the enjoyable time they had in her e-mail.

"I just want to share with you guys the fun and good time we had at Liway Geronimo's birthday get-together last August 11 at the clubhouse of Galeria. There were ten of us (Bebet G, Baby de Guzman, Fe R, Julieta Reyes, Jojo P, Josie I, Emma, Ofel, Liway and myself) who attended the party and enjoyed the sumptuous dinner and good music provided by Pure Sound (all UST conservatory of music students). Bebet and Liway showed their graceful moves in doing the swing. I particularly enjoyed dancing with Liway's good-looking son. It was a memory-filled evening, especially when Juliet brought out her Veritas '68 and we started looking at the photos, comparing at how we looked before in the 60's to the present.Some names cropped out... Imelda Ilagan, whose beautiful voice used to sing a capella during class programs... Lenny, Rose Labarda, Monica, Josie Reyes, Ellen Chanyungco, Elaine Nicolas... and others we look forward to seeing in the next get-together and reunions to come. I hope Baby de Guzman will share the photos she took of the occasion.

Bebet promised to host the next "ladies only" night out.... So Bebet... anytime you are free from your bussssy sket.. we are just a text away." - Reggie De Los Reyes Nolasco

Here are the pictures shared by Baby De Guzman:

L-R: Jojo P., Liway & Evelyn

Bebet showing her dancing skills

L-R: Baby, Josie I. and Josie R.

The celebrant with her guests

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SoCal Batch Welcomed Canadian Batch Mate Cesar Fernandez and Family

August 7, 2006 - Our SoCal batch hosted a welcome party for Canadian batch mate Cesar Fernandez and family last July 29, 2006.  Bing Macavinta's e-mail gives us an account of their get-together.

"7/31/2006 10:01 PM (local time) - First off, it was really wonderful to see the Toronto batch mates finally hold their very first get-together! It’s so good to see the good-looking faces of today. I hope that others will follow suit—Chicago metro group? Maybe, Florida or elsewhere? Hope someone will step up to get it started.

That said, I’m going to start from the “top” about our wonderful, wonderful “Welcome to SoCal party” for Canadian batch mate, Cesar Fernandez & his charming wife, Jojo & adorable daughters- Peachey & Nika (Dominique) this past Saturday, July 29th.

JV and I picked them up at the Diamond Bar Golf course club, where they just had a family reunion for the birthday celebration of Jojo’s mother. JV drove away with Cesar; while the ladies rode in with me en-route to Northridge. Joseph & Vangie Bautista were once more so gracious to host the party. THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH Joseph & Vangie! Couldn’t thank you enough for generously offering your lovely home once again.

It was a perfect Saturday weather (couldn’t ask for more, specially after having some heat-wave just a whole week before), 84 degrees, overcast with the appearance of a threat of rain. But it didn’t rain, so it’s perfect for a top-down driving. Couldn’t resist it as I have been waiting for the heat to let up & it couldn’t be a better time. I asked the young ladies if it was okay to drive with the top-down. And they were all for it—so excited! So off we go cruising the California freeway with the top-down, just enjoying the cool wind & the view—it’s simply exhilarating!!!

JV tried to invite Ms Cedro & Ms Lotilla, but both had prior commitments. We hope to have them join us in the future. As you can see from the pictures, there were few missing and we certainly missed them. Nevertheless, the party was fun as always. I could see that our guest of honor was enjoying the experience—Junnie, who was his seatmate, was able to come this time; except his other seatmate, Raffy could not make it . Raffy called him up though & so, they were able to connect.

The guys were just having a great time exchanging memories of years past— among them- the girls! Yup, they sure talked about those highly visible popular beauties– “tha bomb” of our days. Boys will always be boys ;-). It was indeed a fun day for him being reunited with his HS buddies — and we had fun too Cesar having you & your family as our honored guests! - Thus it made this get-together a well spent Saturday! We ended at nearly midnight. We said our goodbyes & with food-to-go in our hands, off we went our separate ways until……? JV took them home to Chino Hills (Thanks JV!)."
- Bing Macavinta

Here are some of the pictures sent by Bing.  Please click the pictures to view the full image.

In the backyard by the pool. Cesar & Lyne B, Jojo & Cesar F, Bing & skinny Ernie.

 

Dominique & JV joined

scrambling into position

 

With the camera timer, we discovered it's taking 2-shots. This is the first of it.

ooops Bing missed the shot

"Is it going to work?"

"Here's the 1st shot"

"The 2nd one is coming!"

SoCal Batch in attendance

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Condolence to Tessa Sierra and Family on the Death of their Mother

August 6, 2006 - Our condolence to our batch mate Tessa Sierra and her family, whose mother Soledad P. Sierra, peacefully joined her Creator last August 4, 2006 at the age of 84. Her cremated remains are at the Jacinto Chapel of Funeraria Paz, Manila Memorial Park, Sucat, Parañaque until noon on Monday, August 7, 2006.  Let us all pray for the eternal repose of her soul.

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Get-Together of Toronto-Based Batch Mates

July 26, 2006 -  Inspired by the regular reunions of our U.S.-based batch mates, our Canadian batch mates finally ended their isolation and had their first get-together last July 21st,  Friday, at the residence of Zeny Dominguez Baluyot in  Richmond Hill.  In her e-mail, Marie Rañoa Roque shared with us some details of the said event, together with some pictures.

"7/25/2006 - A group of us who now call Toronto home decided to get together. Not much went into planning the evening as it seemed like catch-up time for a bunch of old friends. Attached are pictures capturing the mood of the evening. The guys were recalling their past adventures - more like misadventures (aka "eating fried bananas at some tienda on Dapitan St. without milk as that would cost an extra (unaffordable) 5 cents" -- thanks to Cesar for this). It's amazing what comes to mind when you jog your memory. Another reunion is planned for August 26th, this time hopefully, with a wider base.
Picture includes (L-R): Nic Navarro, Ricky Dizon, Jessie Salonga, Cesar Fernandez, me and Zeny Baluyot.
On a personal note, I thought the guys were a pretty sedate group.... maybe because it was my first time meeting them. - Marie
Rañoa Roque"

Here are some pictures of their get-together. Please click the pictures to view the full image.

L-R: Nic Navarro, Ricky Dizon, Jessie Salonga, Cesar Fernandez, Marie Ranoa Roque and Zeny Dominguez Baluyot

L-R: Nic Navarro, Ricky Dizon, Jessie Salonga & Cesar Fernandez

L-R: Ricky Dizon, Jessie Salonga, Cesar Fernandez & Marie Ranoa Roque

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SoCal Batch Get-Together last June 24, 2006

July 16, 2006 - Last June 24, 2006, our batch mates from Southern California had another get-together, this time, with a new found member - Chito Pangilinan. In response to our call to our SoCal batch mates to include Chito in their get-togethers, Chito was contacted by Ernie Morales. The group was then invited by Chito to a graduation party for his son who just graduated from high school. Bing Macavinta, the designated official PRO of the group, together with JV Omaña, gave us the details in their e-mail.

E-mail from Bing Macavinta:
July 12, 2006 - "Okay Lorna, we heeded to your “page” about Chito Pangilinan. Ernie contacted him & we made sure he becomes a bona fide part of our group. That is how the SoCal batch got together once again last June 24th. The timing was perfect, because that was the only weekend Bebet Guilera-Gozun had on her short stop in Los Angeles en route from Vancouver. And, it was the same weekend that Chito Pangilinan was having a party for his son’s HS graduation (and death anniversary of his mother, if I recall correctly) , Unfortunately, I MISSED the occasion! I was in Vegas for a big family reunion. But here I am, acting as the “Press Relation” person sharing with you all how some of the SoCal batch (& respective partner) spent that one Happy weekend in June together. They were: Chito Pangilinan (the Saturday host), Bebet Gozun, Ernie Morales, Cesar & Lyne Balbontin, JV Omana, Raffy & Lottie Eusebio, Joseph Bautista & Cory Guilera.
As you may have read from the “guest book” section of our website, JV Omana’s account of the day described an evening of “high caloric” intake of just the best of the best of Filipino cooking. In addition, party treats were given to the guys & gals. Since the ladies were given plants, I wonder if I have a plant waiting ;) Do I have one Chito?—just kidding!
Sunday, according to Cesar B’s email to me, he & wife, Lyne met Ernie, Bebet, Cory & a friend of Bebet at Tarzana Lounge for some ballroom dancing treat. So, off they went burning off those calories from the day before & just enjoying the moment.
The guys were so thrilled when these pictures were finally emailed by Bebet. So,UST Manila You must post them for everybody to see—,’cuz as JV puts it—“This is how we look these days!”
SoCal batch will be gathering again later this month to welcome the visit of our Canadian friend, batch mate Cesar Fernandez. So watch out for the tale of that event."

E-mail from JV Omaña:
June 29, 2006 - "The side trip of Bebeth even if it was short was a good and very colorful one. The SoCal USTHS68 active and non active members were invited to a graduation party hosted by our batchmate Armingol a.k.a."Chito Pangilinan. Food were plentiful and very delicious. Talagang lutong Pinoy such as sarsiadong dila, ginataang manok Bicol style, pinakbet (luma ang genuine Ilokano) Lapu lapung isda, Beef na maraming onions, Paella, Lechon and the dessert consisted of Sapin Sapin, ginataan, Pandan. All the food were considered stairway to heaven. Everybody went home scratching their tummy in addition to a party favor which is a guardian angel. Chito is truly galante ika nga. The ladies were given a nice plant but not the boys. Me favoritism talaga si Chito. Our batchmates who graced the occasions were Ernie, Bebeth, Cesar Balbontin and wife, Joseph Bautista, Raffy and Lottie Eusebio and yours truly. Bebeth was treated to a ballroom dance and lessons by Ernie and Cesar the next day before her departure. Almost everyone has made plans for our ruby reunion on Feb. 2008 kaya humanda kayo at kami'y lulusob... Ciao"

Here are some pictures of their get-together. Please click the pictures to view the full image.

Chito Pangilinan, JV Omana, Bebet Gozun, Cesar Balbontin & Ernie Morales

Take 2

Bebet, Chito, Lyne Balbontin, & Lottie Eusebio

Cesar & Lyne Balbontin, Bebet, Chito, Lottie (Raffy & Ernie behind her), JV & a guest

 

The guys: Raffy, Joseph, Chito, Ernie, JV & Cesar

The guys: Raffy, Joseph, Chito, Ernie, JV & Cesar together with a guest.

1st Row: Lyne, Bebet, Lottie & Cesar; 2nd row: Chito, Raffy; On the steps: JV, Joseph & Ernie

Our ballroom dancers: Lyne & Cesar Balbontin, Bebet, Ernie, Cory Gillera & a friend

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Condolence to Ben Apacible and Family on the Death of Their Mother

July 4, 2006 - Our condolence to our batchmate Ben Apacible and his family, whose mother Rosario Oco Apacible of Goa, Camarines Sur and Manila, peacefully joined her Creator on June 30,2006 at the age of 97. Her remains lie in state at National Memorial Homes, Araneta Avenue, Quezon City. Interment is scheduled on Thursday, July 6,2006 at Loyola Memorial Park, Paranaque City after the 2 p.m. Mass.  Let us all pray for the eternal repose of her soul.

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Another Get-Together Of NorCal Batch Mates in Napa Valley

June 12, 2006 - Just barely a week after their get-together at the residence of Chito Cardenas, our Northern California-based batchmates had another gathering last June 4, 2006 at Odette's house in Napa Valley.  In his e-mail last June 10, 2006, Albert Laguardia shared with us some details of the fun time they had together with some pictures:

" I drove to Napa with Helen Raffer whom I met for the first time. We originally planned to carpool with Gurmel Singh but he was unable to attend (he missed a good party!). We arrived in beautiful Napa at 1:15 p.m. Helen and I each received a bottle of wine from Odette as reward for arriving in her house first! Soon after, other batch-mates started trickling in.

Our VERY gracious host prepared a sumptuous array of Vietnamese and Filipino food. Other guests brought ukoy, bitso-bitso and other Filipino delicacies. I also brought croissant pudding for desert. Marunong akong mag-bake paminsan-minsan! We also had Chito Cardenas’ wife’s (Normie) famous heart warming “arroz caldo”. Yummm. Odette topped it all by serving her special blend of cappuccino coffee (tagilid ang STARBUCKS!).

Later in the afternoon, everyone gathered at the back porch and started showing their “gilas sa pagsayaw”. The party reluctantly ended about 9:00 p.m. Again Nor-cal’s USTHS batch ‘68bid adieu to one another after a fun-filled afternoon in sunny Napa, California.  As you can see, everyone had a very nice time! " - Albert Laguardia

Here are some pictures shared by Albert and Odette which were taken in Odette's Napa Valley home.

It was a gorgeous Sunday today, June 4,2006 and this was the view from my kitchen while I was making Vietnamese lumpia for the batchmates coming in 2 hours.

Finally, here they are :Fely Aglugub travelled from Hercules,Ca., Helen Raffer from Sacramento, Enrie Sabio from Antioch, Odette and Cherrie Ramirez from Hercules

Helen Pacis Raffer (standing) from Sacramento CA with Fely Aglugub Hannan who traveled from Hercules, CA

The busy bodies in the kitchen - Cherry Roque Ramirez and our gracious hostess - Odette Wallace

The NorCal Batchmates -

Seated in front (L-R) - Fely Aglugub Hannan, Albert Laguardia, Normie & Chito Cardenas

Standing (L-R) - Pete, Cynthia Principe, Cherrie Ramirez, Enrie Samson Sabio, Odette Wallace, Chito Zuniga, Helen Pacis Raffer, Facil (Dawn Zulueta's dad and a good friend of Chito C.) & Rosie Zuniga

Clockwise-Fely, Facil,Enrie,Al,Chito Z and Rosie,Chito C and Normie and Helen. Lots of fruits from the farmer's market and some from the neighbor's produce,Vietnamese barbeque and spring rolls,Thai noodles and tom yum kung soup plus some comfort food adobo, kaldereta, ukoy, kangkong vietnamese. Al baked croissant with cream fillings for coffee time. And Normie prepared arroz caldo for merienda.

Al Laguardia and Chito Zuniga

Our new found D.I. Len Sabio

Swing time at the porch

Enrie, Fely, Helen, Cherrie, Cynthia and Odette

Pete, Cynthia, Cherrie, Enrie, Odette,Chito Z, Helen, Facil, Rosie, Chito C, Normie, Al, Fely

Playtime ....

Helen and Enrie. Three years ago when we first had our ger-together and had a photo on this view, the road was not paved .

From left to right: Pete, Cynthia, Helen, Al, Fely , Rosie, Enrie, Cynthia, Odette, Normie & Chito C.

Helen,Chito Z.,Rosie Zuniga,Facil, Normie and Al

 

Normie,Odette,Helen and Rosie

The magic of wireless communication .

Swing it!!

Al and Enrie catching up on their stories and what happened the last 38 years.

Sundown dance .....

Future D.I. Chito C. now sampling the rumba

Parang high school pa din!

This was close to 9 :15 pm when the party broke up. There was still a bit of light at this hour of day here. Everybody had to travel for more than an hour. It was such a beautiful Sunday indeed to touch base and know that the energy level and desire for camaraderie is still there.

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Get-Together of Northern California-based Batchmates at the Residence of Chito Cardenas

June 1, 2006Chito Cardenas hosted a get-together of some Northern California-based batch mates last May 29, 2006.  In his e-mail last May 31, 2006 Chito shared with us the fun time they all had that day.

"We had our reunion at my place last Monday, 05/29. It started from 1:00 p.m. to midnight. Odette was the first to arrive at 1:00 PM and the rest trickled in. Those who attended were Albert Laguardia (first time attendee), Gurmel Singh both from Sacramento, Chito Zuniga, Joey and Francis Zuniga and of course, Odette. I also invited several guests like the father of Dawn Zulueta - Fazil Taleon. It was cold but we were sweating because of laughing. We sweated more when Odette challenged us to dance.

We had a very good time laughing and we made fun of Gurmel Singh for being a Bombay and the 5-6 thing. That's the reason why we lasted almost 12 hours considering that Odette has a 1 1/2 hour drive home and Albert and Gurmel have 2 hours to drive. Albert and Helen Pacis will be visiting Odette at Napa this Saturday.

I served inihaw na baboy - Pinoy style (just plain salt, garlic, pepper and kalamansi), sinigang na baboy, inihaw na tilapia, enseladang talbos ng kamote, sisig and Zuniga brought in lumpiang shanghai. Nag-amoy usok ang buong bahay at hinihintay ko na lang tumawag ng pulis and mga kapitbahay dahil sa kapal ng usok.

Odette will be posting our pictures of the reunion in our website." - Chito Cardenas

Here are some pictures forwarded by Odette:

Joey Magsaysay, Chito Z. ,Francis Magsaysay, Al Laguardia, Gurmel and Chito C.

Taken infront of Chito C's music collection numbering more than 3,000 pcs.

The food was great. We had great comfort food inihaw na liempo ginataang gulay, inihaw na tilapia,inihaw na talong, sinigang na baboy,melon juice, arroz caldo for merienda, ginisang mani at deadly chicharon with the wine. Forget that gout!

Joey, ChitoC,Al, Normy and Facil (father of Dawn Zulueta,guest of Chito and the source of funny jokes)

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Afternoon Delight With Chito Pangilinan

May 27, 2006 -  Yesterday afternoon, May 26, 2006, Alice Yatco, Lorna Buenviaje and Beth Magpayo had an enjoyable lunch with our balikbayan batch mate, Chito Pangilinan at the Banana Leaf Curry House at Power Plant in Rockwell, Makati.  Chito flew in from the U.S. last May 11, 2006 to be with his mother who was terminally ill (she died  last May 14, 2006).   It was an afternoon of reminiscing the past, and catching up on the latest news about our batch mates.  Later, Albert Buenviaje was able to join them for tea and some dessert. The jokes, stories and updates continued till mid afternoon.  Chito, who is based in L.A., California would like to join the SoCal batch in their get-togethers.  (Paging  - Bing Macavinta, Ernie Morales and our other SoCal batch mates, please take note of this.)  For more about Chito, please see his profile in our Profiles page.

Here are some pictures taken over lunch.

From left to right: Alice Yatco, Lorna Buenviaje, Beth Magpayo and Chito Pangilinan

Chito Pangilinan

Albert Buenviaje (middle) joined the group later over tea and dessert.

Beth Magpayo and Chito Pangilinan, best of friends since high school

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Condolence to Chito Pangilinan and Family On The Death of Their Mother

May 18, 2006 -  Our condolence to our batchmate Chito Pangilinan and his family, whose mother, Herminia Pangilinan, died from a lingering illness last Sunday, May 14, 2006,  at the age of 89.  Her remains lie in state at Funeraria Paz in Quezon City.  Interment is scheduled on Sunday at 10:00 a.m.  Let us all pray for the eternal repose of her soul.

Chito flew in from the U.S. last  May 11, 2006 to be  with his mother during her last moments.

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Condolence to the Family of Cesar "Chito" M. Yap

March 29, 2006 Our condolence to the family of our batchmate, Cesar "Chito" M. Yap who suffered a severe stroke and died last March 26 (Monday) at the age of 55.  He is survived by his wife Cynthia, his three children and four grandchildren.   His remains lies at Lot 2 Block 2 New Mahogany Village, San Isidro, Cabuyao, Laguna (beside the Hardiflex Plant). Our batchmates, led by Ricky Yatco, plan to go to Cesar's wake on Friday night (March 31st).  Interment is scheduled on April 1 (Saturday), 2:00 p.m. at the Holy Family, Mamatid, Cabuyao, Laguna. Let us all pray for the eternal repose of his soul.

You can read the brief messages for Cesar sent by our batchmates and Prof. Rod Cantiveros in our Transitions page.

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Travel Tips For Our Foreign-based Batch Mates

March 26, 2006 - Don Mejia sent the following news clip from the Philippine Daily Inquirer (3/25/2006), for the information of our batchmates who are coming to visit the Philippines:

" SAN FRANCISCO--In a bid to boost travel to the Philippines and other Asian capitals, Philippine Airlines (PAL) has re-launched its Swingaround program in the US. By adding a minimal amount to the airline's airfare, a passenger will be flown to any of the eight designated Swingaround destinations in the Philippines -- Bohol, Boracay, Cebu, Davao, Laoag, Manila, Palawan, or Tagaytay.

"Our Swingaround program is ta ilored to those budget-conscious travelers who want to see and visit more places in the region in order to satisfy their curiosity of oriental culture and of Asia's exotic destinations," Dell Merano, the new PAL district sales manager in San Francisco, said in a press statement.

"Under our Swingaround program, a passenger is pampered with services -- a domestic flight to his or her selected destination, two-night hotel stay with sumptuous Filipino breakfast, and round-trip transfer between airport and hotel," said Tito Cuenco, PAL USA country manager.

"The Swingaround packages are very attractive and will definitely encourage more travelers to visit provincial destinations in the Philippines. This will bring greater income and job opportunities in the countryside. We hope that more travelers especially the Filipino families will take this opportunity to discover the many wonderful areas of our country," said Rene de los Santos, tourism director for Northwestern USA of the Philippine Department of Tourism.
PAL's Swingaround program also takes the more adventurous travelers to other Asian capitals using Manila as the transit point. At very reasonable costs, passengers are flown either to Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Nepal, Shanghai, Singapore, or Xiamen complete with three-day hotel accommodation, daily breakfast, round-trip airport-hotel transfer, and optional city tours.

PAL has tied up with INQ7.net, effective September 1, to provide online promotional support to the program. INQ7.net, a joint venture between two media giants in the Philippines -- the Philippine Daily Inquirer and GMA Network -- will run an online trivia contest for Internet users for six months. The trivia contest fields three different questions every month. The questions are about PAL and selected Philippine travel destinations. Each set of correct answers entitles a participant to one raffle entry, with the winner getting a free round-trip Swingaround package to selected Philippine destinations.

PAL will pick up one winner every month in the last three months of its promotional campaign. Interested travelers can participate in the trivia contest by logging on to www.inq7.net. Passengers wishing to avail of Swingaround packages can contact their favorite travel agents for rates and other information."

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Get-Together of SoCal Batch Mates for Chito Cardenas

March 21, 2006 -  We received two  e-mails, one from Cesar Balbontin and the other from Bing Macavinta, regarding the latest get together of the SoCal Batch, this time to welcome Chito Cardenas, who attended a seminar in Southern California.

E-mail from Cesar Balbontin:
"Last Saturday 3-18-06, batchmates from Southern California gave a get-together party for Chito Cardenas who is here to attend a seminar. Party was held at Joseph Bautista's beautiful Northridge Residence which started at 3 p.m. and lasted till 1 a.m. Present were Bing Macavinta (Dancing Queen), Ernie Morales (Dancing King), Manny Tayag and his son Mardy, Pancho Tabora (Funny Man), Raffy Eusebio with his beautiful wife, yours truly and wife Lyne with my son Mark, Al Ramirez (Mr. Corvette), Joseph Bautista (the Host) and his beautiful wife Vangie and Chito Cardenas (DI).

Everybody had a goodtime, specially when Chito started with his oldies/goodies jokes (non-stop). Ernie showed everybody how to dance the swing, cha-cha and salsa.

Pancho Tabora, Bing Macavinta, Manny Tayag and Raffy Eusebio and wife and my wife had a wonderful time dancing the whole night.

I've got to go now, but you guys are gonna hear more from Bing Macavinta.

Pahabol: Special Thanks to Joseph and Vangie Bautista for letting us in their beautiful house. To Ernie Morales for picking-up Chito at LAX and Bing Macavinta for keeping everybody up to date on what's going on. -
Cesar Balbontin
"

E-Mail from Bing Macavinta:
"It’s been a while since SoCal batch was last together. When the word came out that batch mate Chito Cardenas was going to attend a bank seminar down in Los Angeles on March 19th, Ernie & I alerted everyone as early as January to save Saturday, March 18th for a get-together.

In the interim, I contacted Cesar Balbontin when I saw his guestbook message on the website and invited him to join us. Ernie made all the arrangement and I just played the role of the “Press Secretary.”

Batch mate Joseph Bautista and his darling wife, Vangie, hosted the gathering at their beautiful gated home in Northridge. It was overcast and the threat of rain was looming over. It was a long drive for a number of us, but nothing to stop us from welcoming Chito to extend to him our Southern California hospitality. It was a potluck and my gush, the food was plenty-- enough to feed an army--- & really yummy too!

I got there about 3:30 p.m. Ernie & Chito were already there. Cesar Balbontin, his wife Lyne and their youngest son came shortly after. Then Al Ramirez arrived a bit later.

First time to meet Chito & he’s really a character!! A bit skewed sense of humor--- just kidding Chito. He just fired away with his jokes--- of all colors ;). And us, his captive audience was truly entertained and had the laughter of the day.

Manny Tadena, who is another new addition to our group, came all the way from Huntington Beach with his son. A local friend of Chito came too and joined in with the fun. Raffy, his wife Lottie and Pancho Tabora arrived last (about 8:30 p.m.). Unfortunately, Al Ramirez had to leave early. Eating continues--- there’s just so much food! A little later, Chito picked up on his joke-telling again. And I must say he’s got quite a collection. At one time, he had to look at his notes. Extrovert people like him are just the spice & truly the life of the party! Even Ernie joined in this time and told a couple or three jokes.

Filipino parties will not be complete without the karaoke---- so we had Pancho opening up with some tagalong song by Leah Salonga. Then, Chito with his Frank Sinatra’s “My Way.” Joseph & Cesar pitched in too. Soon after, dancing was the finale of the evening. Chito brought along a CD of various ballroom music. And we just danced to it; while Joseph, Vangie & Cesar looked on. Chito taught us rumba steps. And Ernie is now a pro! Boy, did we work up a sweat! It was nearly 1:00 a.m. when we ended. Oh yes, we did break for some picture taking. It was from Chito’s camera--- so as soon as those are ready, we’ll send them for posting.

Though we missed the presence of Ike Lloren, JV Omana, Junnie Navarro & Cory Guillera, the SoCal batch get-together honoring Chito Cardenas was definitely another success! -
Bing Macavinta "

Here are the pictures forwarded by Bing.  Please click the pictures to view the full image.

L-R: Seated: Joseph Bautista, Cesar Balbontin, Al Ramirez, Ernie Morales;

Standing: Manny Tayag, Raffy Eusebio, Pancho Tabora & Chito Cardenas (honoree)

L-R: Seated: Chito, Pancho, Raffy & Manny

Standing: Cesar, Al, Joseph & Ernie

L-R: Seated: Chito, Pancho, Bing, Manny & Raffy

Standing: Cesar, Al, Joseph & Ernie

By Rows - in Ascending L-R:

Chito, Manny, Raffy & Bing

Joseph & Al

Cesar & Ernie

Pancho - on the very top



Cesar Balbontin & Pancho Tabora



Bing Macavinta & Manny Tayag

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Message to Batch '68 from Prof. Rod Cantiveros

March 2, 2006 -  Our former high school teacher, Prof. Rod Cantiveros just visited our website recently and left a message for Batch '68 in our Guest Book .  He is now based in Winnipeg, Canada with his family.   You can read his message in our Guest Book page.  Please note that Mr. Cantiveros' picture, which is published here, was taken from the Veritas  with his written message to Albert Buenviaje. (Please click the picture to view an enlarged version.)

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Carlos Diokno and Rey Protacio's Visit

Feb. 2, 2006 -  A couple of balikbayan batch mates namely, Carlos Diokno and Rey Protacio, were in town recently and attended the regular meeting and get-together of USTHS '68 held last January 28, 2006 in Ricky Yatco's place.  Odette Wallace sent the following e-mail about the get-together:

Jan. 31, 2006 - " ..... Batch 68 once again regrouped last Jan. 28, 2006 to welcome Carlos Diokno who arrived from Toronto, Canada and Rey Protacio from New Jersey, USA. The batchmates were hoping to get a glimpse of Alberto Laguardia who apparently also flew in from the West Coast, but he couldn't make it. Last night was definitely a nostalgic one, no dancing but the music of the 60's and 70's filled the neighborhood of Sta. Teresita parish. At around 7 p.m. Bebet , Plut and I entered Ricky Yatco's quiet lanai. It was empty almost eerie , no food nor drinks in sight to show a party was about to happen. But at 7:15, they started to trickle in - Carlos Diokno , Ray Protacio, Don Mejia , Gani Buenaflor, Batch Cuyugan with his guitars, Ray Fernandez, Boy Castaneda, Renee de los Reyes Nolasco, Ruby Espiritu Magsaysay, Fredo de Jesus, Ed Alimagno, Ronnie Galang, John and Ruby Tan, William and Doris Lim. Jun Tullao who lives the closest came in last. We had caldereta beef, dinuguan with puto (Renee's forte), paksiw na bangus, miki bihon and Andok's lechon manok.
Once again the regrouping party exchanged telephone numbers and addresses, brushed up on past events - who died?, who remarried?, who split?, whose son or daughter married or who has a new grandchild or simply happy to be there..........
It was an unusual evening because there was no loud music or stereo sounds but more on bonding storytelling. We recalled "those years" when we did not have cellphones, ipods, computers, internet, chat rooms or even cars.
But we had FRIENDS . We went out a lot and found comfort sites in FRIENDS. Probably our parents were trying to reach us all day while we played outside or simply jamming from morning till night. But there was a lot of honesty, trust and freedom in our day to day lives. We experienced failures, success, lots of responsibility with very little money and hey, survived and learned to deal with it all. And the funny thing is , we are always comfortable to bring back those happy years again and again ...."
- Odette Wallace

           Here are some photos shared by Odette.  Lito Diokno also sent some photos. (Please click the photo to view an enlarged version):

With guitar and wine handy, the night was right for visiting batchmate Carlos Diokno who flew in from Toronto, Canada.

Standing (L-R): Plut Cardenas, Renee de los Reyes Nolasco, Bebet Gozum, Caloy Diokno, myself, Gani Buenaflor, Ricky Yatco.

Seated (L-R): Ruby Espiritu Magsaysay, Don Mejia, Batch Cuyugan

Here Ronnie Galang joins in the picture.

Alam niyo kapag mga tumatanda, it takes a while before they notice na may kodakan pala. Kaya pose kami ng pose for those who just joined in. Here John Tan, Fredo de Jesus, Ronnie Galang and Ray Fernandez (with the guitar) joined us.

Everybody singing Guantanamera, the song that won The Warbling 15 a place in the Intercollegiate songfest a place some umph years ago!

Who sang this song again?

"Oohnie, why don't you grow up?

You're not yet grown up

Why play the game? "

(Chito Cardenas reacted to this caption : this was sang by the Electric Prunes )

All of a sudden, the mood became sombre when William announced that Benny Ang had another stroke and is confined at St. Luke's.

And here is Peter, Paul and Mary........ (Caloy singing Guantanamera, the song that gave The Warbling 15 a place in the Intercollegiate songfest so many many years ago. With him in the picture are Ruby Espiritu Magsaysay and Ray Fernandez.)

 

Here they are singing Don't Let the Sun Catch you Crying..........

And now "kodakan" na uli with the arrival of Boy Castaneda and Rey Protacio who also flew in from New Jersey.

Seated (L-R): Rey Protacio, Ronnie Galang, Plut Cardenas, Don Mejia, Reggie De Los Reyes Nolasco, Ruby Espiritu Magsaysay and Fredo De Jesus

Standing (L-R): Bebet Gillera Gozun, Carlos Diokno and Gani Buenaflor)

kodakan uli...

Go batch 68!!!

The batch '68 with balikbayan batch mates Rey Protacio and Lito Diokno

Naku Fredo behave please, nandito si Brother Jun Tullao sa tabi ko!

Here Ruby , wife of John Tan and Doris, wife of William Lim joined us for the final picture. Whew!

Lito Diokno with Gani Buenaflor and Don Mejia

Bebet Gozun, Lito Diokno and Odette Wallace

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Wedding of Juancho Magsaysay (Ruby Espiritu Magsaysay's Son)

Feb. 2, 2006 - Odette Wallace sent some photos taken during the wedding of Ruby's son Juancho to his long time sweetheart Lee from New York City last Jan. 14, 2006. They were married at St Dominic's Church in Mindanao Ave. and the reception was held at Albergus, Capitol Hills. The sponsors included Odette, Ricky Yatco and Carlos Corsiga. According to Odette, during the wedding reception, Fredo de Jesus won or grabbed? the bride's garter and got a chance to fit that to the lady who caught the bouquet. Better late than never! 

Here are some photos shared by Odette. (Please click the photo to view an enlarged version):

The newlyweds with the principal sponsors which include our batchmates Odette Wallace, Ricky Yatco and Caloy Corsiga.

Batch '68 toasts the bride and groom. L-R: Fredo De Jesus, Ruby Espiritu Magsaysay, Caloy Corsige, Odette Wallace, Ricky Yatco and wife Eppie

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Lilli (Sta. Ines) Gonzales Visits Northern California Batch Mates

Feb. 2, 2006 -  Enrie Sabio sent the following e-mail recounting the recent visit of batchmate Lilli (Sta. Ines) Gonzales:

"Jan. 30, 2006 -  .......Last December, Lilli (Sta. Ines) Gonzales visited Northern Calif. from Virginia so the girls got together and had a "slumber party" at our house. It was a fun-filled weekend of giggles, laughter and feeling like high school kids again.  Present were Helen Pacis Raffer, Cherry Roque Ramirez, Cynthia Principe Hocson, Fely Aglugub Hannan, Lilli Sta Ines Gonzales & myself. ...." - Enrie Sabio

Here are the pictures sent by Enrie:

L-R: Fely Aglugub Hannan, Lilli Sta. Ines Gonzales, Enrie Samson Sabio, Cherry Roque Ramirez, Cynthia Principe Hocson and Helen Pacis Raffer.

Top (L-R): Cherry, Lilli and Fely

Front (L-R): Cynthia, Enrie and Helen

L-R: Enrie, Fely, Cynthia, Cherry, Lilli and Helen

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Photos of Combined Birthday Celebration in 2005 of August and September Celebrants

Feb. 2, 2006 -  Better late than never..... Odette has belatedly sent us the photos taken last week of August 2005 during the combined birthday celebration of batchmates whose birthday fell on August and September and also served as the farewell party for Fredo De Jesus who went back to Las Vegas at that time. Gurmel Singh from California was in Manila then and gifted the ladies with long-stemmed red roses. Take note of the heavy attendance here.

Don dancing with Bebet and Odette with Plut.............

Here Fred de Jesus was swing dancing with Ruby Espiritu Magsaysay........

Group Picture

The Young Ones (or Once?).....

A good attendance from the ladies............

The batch'68 boys.

Side view daw nila ito.

Dancetime with Lito (our D.I.)..........

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Alay Kay Pacman

Jan. 31, 2006 -  A fitting tribute to Manny Pacquiao, forwarded to us by our batch mate Willy Yu.  Click here to view  Alay Kay Pacman.

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News From Lito Diokno

Jan. 3, 2006 -  After decades of silence, we recently heard from one of our well known batchmate, Carlito "Lito" Diokno, who found us thru our website.  You can read Lito's e-mail in our Guest Book page.

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New Year Message From Bebet

Jan. 2, 2006 - Bebet Gozun sent the following inspiring New Year message for Batch '68:

Most of us miss out on life's big prizes:
the Pulitzer,
the Nobel,
the Ramon Magsaysay.

But we are all eligible for life's small pleasures:
a pat in the back,
a good word,
a hug,
an empty parking space,
a great meal,
a cold drink,
ice cream,
peace of mind,
good health,
an interesting book,
the smell of newly cut grass,
a good friend like you.

Enjoy life's little gifts all year through!

Happy 2006!


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Year-End Get-Together of Some Batch Mates

 Jan. 2, 2006-  We received the following e-mail from Don Mejia regarding their year-end get-together and visit to the wake of Jojo Montemayor last Friday, Dec. 30. 

Dec. 31, 2005 - "Last night, we had dinner kina Ricky Yatco, nanduon sila Odette Ko, Ruby Espiritu, John Tan and his wife Ruby, Plut Cardenas, Ronnie Galang, Caloy Corsiga, Jimmy Tan, Alex Noda, Fredo De Jesus, Tereso ' Jun' Tullao, Pete Dobles, ako at si Ricky. Kain kami ng masarap na exotic food 'kinunot' - lutong Bicol, maanghang ginataan stingray- pagii, 'tinutong' - ginataan native chicken, Pancit Malabon, and also had couple of San Mig light beer, red wine with crab crackers.

At the fellowship, we were happy to hear that Jimmy Guieb, widower, got married to a beautiful 36 year old single lady Malou Wenceslao of  Sta Rosa Laguna!!! Wish both of them happiness in their married life.

Then at about 9 p.m. we all proceeded to the wake of our batchmate Jojo Montemayor at Sto. Domingo Church.  Nanduon sina Anthony Dee. Later dumating naman to join us sa wake si Bon Bailon.  The previous night, nagpunta sina Joey Crisostomo, Boy Gabriel, Jimmy Tan, Anthony at Ricky. Joanna, widow of Jojo, was a classmate of Jimmy Tan. We stayed till almost midnite.

Jojo died last Dec 28, 2005 at the age of 55 due to aortic aneurism.  Internment will be this Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2006 at Holy Cross Memorial, Novaliches after the 9 a.m. mass.

We plan our next meeting to be held on January 28, 2006 at Rickys place. We plan to have ginataan dinuguan, laing, both will be cooked the famous Bicol stlyle. Ricky found a chef from "Bee-cool." Caloy Corsiga is from the Bicol area and will vouch another exotic Bicol cuisine will be worth looking forward to!!! Bon Apetit!!." - Don Mejia

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