THE memories of Mayor Maria Clara Lobregat remain fresh in the recollection of Zamboangueños six years after her death on January 2, 2004.

This, as local residents, representing the different sectors participated in the simple program Saturday marking the 6th death anniversary of the late mayor, the city’s only woman mayor for the past years.

Mayor Celso Lobregat, eldest son of the late mayor, headed City Government officials including members of the City Council, representatives from national and local agencies and multi-sectoral groups of the city in the different activities that kicked off with a commemorative mass at the St. Joseph Church, followed by a motorcade, floral offering and a short program at the Jardin Maria Clara in Pasonanca village.

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The program Saturday demonstrated the Zamboangueños’ undying admiration, respect and appreciation to the late mayor touted as the most endearing person to be the mayor of Zamboanga and looked up by most residents as the mother of the city, its protector and benefactor.

Councilor Reynerio Candido and Zamboanga Philippine National Red Cross-Zamboanga City chapter administrator Victor Liozo, Jr. reminisced their old days with the late mayor through the “Recuerdos de Ayer,” as Joel Bustamante gave an interpretation of the song “You raised me Up.”

The Zamboanga Hermosa Choral Group offered the chorale rendition, song tribute and led in the community singing.

Celso, in his response thanked all Zamboangueños for their enduring admiration, respect and gratitude to his late mother, as he vowed to continue with more vigorously his mother’s visions and missions for the city of Zamboanga through the help of other public servants and all the residents.

He expressed gratitude most especially to those who participated in the activities commemorating the 6th death anniversary of the late mayor, who is fondly called as Ma’am Caling.

City Health Officer Rodelin Agbulos, organizing chair of the program welcomed the guests while District I Councilor Rodolfo Lim gave the closing message.

The Air Force Band provided the recessional during the floral offering and the consequent release of the balloons prior to the brief commemorative program.

Jardin Maria Clara is one of the numerous legacies of the late mayor.

It is a butterfly garden and showcases the different variety of gumamela and other exotic flowering plants.

With an attractive landscape, Jardin Maria Clara houses the statue of the late Ma’am Caling uphill, the soon to be inaugurated museum which will house memorabilia of the different mayors of Zamboanga City and a workshop building.

Outside the Jardin gate are public food stalls which were inaugurated last July 17.

The elder Lobregat died at the age of 83 in a hospital in Manila due to cardiac arrest on the night of January 2, 2004.