THE former secretary of former president Corazon Aquino, Dr. Lourdes Reynes-Quisumbing, died at 8:15 pm last Saturday at the Perpetual Succour Hospital. She was 96.
Lourdes is survived by eight of her 10 children, 27 grandchildren, 22 great grandchildren, and three great great grandchildren.
Carlos Quisumbing Jr., 72, said his mother was brought to the hospital after she had a hard time breathing.
Her heartbeat was down to 30 beats per minutes (the normal resting rate is 60 to 100) and was given oxygen to ease her discomfort.
Carlos said he had nine siblings but one died while he was just a week old; another brother also passed away.
Aside from Carlos, Lourdes’ other surviving children are 74-year-old Visitacion, Isidro, Ricardo, Gabriel, Maria Socorro, Maria Lourdes, and Maria Agnes.
Lourdes was born in Compostela, Cebu.
She finished high school at the St. Catherine’s School in Carcar City.
She took a course in education at the St. Theresa’s College in Manila and graduated summa cum laude.
She finished her master’s degree at the University of San Carlos (USC) and her doctorate in education at the University of Santo Tomas.
Lourdes was a teacher at St. Theresa’s College in Cebu and USC before she became the dean of De La Salle University’s Graduate School of Education in 1977.
She then became the president of Miriam College Foundation a year later.
During the administration of Cory Aquino, she was appointed as secretary of the Department of Education, Culture and Sports, now the Department of Education, and served from 1986 to 1990.
Lourdes also worked as secretary general of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Philippines.
Before she retired, Quisumbing chaired the board of St. Theresa’s College in Cebu City. (EOB)