Zambales patriarch wins Ulirang Ama 2011
In a fitting celebration of Father’s Day, former governor and Liberal Party stalwart Attorney Amor Deloso wins Ulirang Ama 2011
A Zambaleño father of nine children — five of them lawyers, one a practicing doctor in the United States, another a soon-to-be engineer son, another son a soon-to-be lawyer, and a soon-to-be accountant daughter — is an awardee in this year’s Natatanging Ulirang Ama.
In a fitting celebration of Father’s Day, former governor and Liberal Party stalwart Attorney Amor Deloso reaped in the field of law and judiciary along with more than 20 other awardees in different categories.
The ceremony was held at the Century Park Hotel in Manila last Sunday.
The National Mother’s Day and Father’s Day Foundation Incorporated give the award yearly to fathers who exemplify outstanding performance as individuals in their field of endeavor and at the same time as fathers to their children.
The Ulirang Ama Award is a project of the foundation to help teach Filipinos to respect and honor their parents and strengthen family ties.
“It also offers Filipinos, especially the youth, with role models who exemplify integrity, high moral principles, and ideal care and nurturing of children,” the foundation said.
This year’s awardees also include Armed Forces Chief of Staff General Eduardo Oban, Congressman Bienvenido Abante, Philippine Navy Rear Admiral Edmund Tan, Bases Conversion and Development Authority Chairman Felicito Payumo, and former Commission on Elections (COMELEC) Commissioner Vicente De Lima, the father of Department of Justice Secretary Leila De Lima.
Honed by poverty, education
Two-time outstanding governor and brilliant lawyer Deloso came from humble beginnings whose parents imbued in him values of hard work, education, and concern for the plight of the man on th street.
He recalled how his mother Natividad used to seek help from wealthy businessmen in this town for his tuition fee, carrying with her and presenting his school card, in exchange for a day’s house labor.
“Life during those times was hard but I learned to persevere,” Atty. Deloso said.
He revealed that when it was time for him to have kids he told himself he will do everything to give them the best education they can have.
“But I didn’t forget the value of simple, frugal life so I enrolled them in public schools,” the former governor said.
His marriage to former Botolan town mayor Sally Poynter-Deloso blessed them with nine children namely Zarmi, Cheryl, Ad Hebert, Yodel, Arys, Omar, Renoir, Izelle Iamly, and Vijay Vianney.
Zarmi Deloso-Marasigan is a Diplomat Doctor of Medicine in the US, Atty. Cheryl Deloso-Montalla is a former vice governor of this province, Iba town Mayor Ad Hebert is also a lawyer and former fiscal in the province, Atty. Yodel Deloso-Penacho is a practicing immigration lawyer based in California. Fourth child Arys is also a lawyer and is a member of the Board of Regents at the Ramon Magsaysay Technological University (RMTU) here.
Omar is on his way to becoming another lawyer in the family who is now on his third year of law studies at the University of Santo Tomas (UST). Renoir is a geodetic engineering student at the University of the Philippines, Izelle Iamly—a Juris Doctor and just recently passed the Bar Exams, and Vijay Vianney is on his senior years in accountancy.
In all of these accomplishments, daughter Atty. Cheryl said their father gave them a free hand in choosing their careers in life.
“Majority of us opted to become lawyers not because he wanted us to become one but for us, this is our way of telling him that we idolize and honor him,” the former vice governor said.
Governance of educational reforms, poverty alleviation
In his 30 years as public servant who rose from being mayor of his hometown Botolan to becoming one of the most beloved governors of the province, Deloso actively pushed for reforms in education and espoused genuine care for the needy.
In his latest term as governor, he was able to put up more than 200 new classrooms and has funded repairs and improvements in a number of existing schools around the province.
“Too bad it was during my incumbencies that several disasters struck this province,” he recalled, pointing to the eruption of Mount Pinatubo and the devastating typhoons that wrecked havoc in the province that stalled developments.
In 2009, typhoons Kiko and Ondoy swept almost 70 percent of Botolan, leaving more than 3,000 families homeless and displaced.
Many indigents are witness to how the former governor treats the needy. In all of his stints as father of this province, he was often seen talking to the poor and asking them how he can help them.
The provincial capitol is always flooded with people from different walks of life and he always saw to it that the indigents were prioritized.
His executive assistant, Rene Totol, said that during Gov. Deloso’s last stint, the governor’s office was always filled with an average of 2,000 indigents per day with requests ranging from hospitalization to food to school matters.
“All of their requests were being tended to and we saw to it that as soon as they left the governor’s office, they had answers to what they came for,” Totol explained.
Even to this date, the former governor is regularly visited by indigents at his residence for personal requests. He makes it a point to help them in any way he can, even sending them to his son Ad Hebert who is mayor of this town.
The son gladly accommodates, saying that helping the people is a legacy he must continue, and should be continued along with his other siblings and family.(WLB/AMV-PIA 3 Zambales)