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On our return from a recent trip to Dumanagas we detoured to Dingle, to find the elusive statue of General Hernandez, the Revolutionary War Hero. We had been repeatedly told that it was located in the town square. Despite our efforts, we couldn’t find it so in desparation we went to see our friends at the Dingle Public Library to ask for the help again! Theresita D. Corpuz, one of the librarians at the Dingle Municipal Library was her usual helpful self and kindly directed us to Camp Hernandez about a 10 minute drive from town.
I’ve never been on a Philippines army base so I pictured us arriving as I have done in Canada and just driving past the Gatehouse onto the base and upto the monument, taking our pictures and leaving.
WRONG! WRONG! WRONG!
Keywords here are Philippines Army Base – SECURITY IS JOB ONE! We arrived at the Maingate and were gfreeted by an armed sentry in the Guardhouse. He asked our business and for all our identification papers and then disappeared into the Guardhouse for about 20 minutes.
It was lunch time and he was, apparently, having trouble finding an officer who would give the authorization for us to get on base. I took a picture of this sign below and when I turned to take a picture of the actual entrance and the soldier who was dealing with us, I was told in no uncertain term not to do it! Security, don’t you know…
Eventually, a soldier in full combat uniform, carrying an automatic rifle strapped across his front arrived in a motorcycle. He had a few words with the sentry and we were waved in and told to follow the officer on the ‘bike. He led us to the monument by the most direct route, we saw nothing until we arrived at the parade grounds and there it was…General Hernandez’s statue.
The last picture I was allowed to take, was an attempt to get the wording on the plaque affixed to the statue…here it is:
It’s not very clear, nevertheless, here is what is states:
General Adriano Dayot Hernandez
Born on September 8, 1870 in Dingle, Iloilo, General Hernandez was a leader
in the struggle for PhilippineIndependence. Instrumental in launching the
Revolution of 1896 against the Spanish, he gave the first call for independence
at the “Cry of Barrio Lincud”. He continued to fight in the Pilipino-American War
leading the Revolutionary Army in Guerilla Warfare.
In peace, he was elected Assemblyman in the first Philippine Assembly in 1907,
the first Governor of Iloilo from the Nationalista Party in 1912.
And the first Pilipino Director in the Bureau of Agriculture in 1916.
General Hernandez died on February 16, 1925.
A Hero and A Patriot.
Once we finished, we were escroted back to the main gate. We thanked both the Officer Escort and the Sentry for the patience and for allowing us to take these few photographs. They do a fantastic job for the people of the Philippines and more people should take the time to thank them for their efforts.
The town of Dingle hosts the Pagdihon Festival annually, it’s a celebration commemorating the “Cry of Lincud”, which started the revolutionary war against the Spaniards on the island of Panay. It is held during the 4th week of October each year.
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