Bacolor honors memory of town's 'beloved son'

PAMPANGA. Mayor Diman Datu joins local officials and descendants of the Galura clan after the honor rites in front of the late hero's monument. (Ian Ocampo Flora)

WORKS and the memory of the late multi-talented Felix Galura were honored by the Municipal Government of Bacolor and the Don Honorio Ventura State University (DHVSU) in commemoration rites during the birthday of the town's illustrious son in front of the hero's monument on February 21.

The event was attended by municipal officials led by Mayor Diman Datu and the DHVSU community.

Curator Francis Musni of the DHVSU Heritage Museum said Felix Galura was one of the most prominent and versatile writers at the turn of 20th century.

He was a poet, translator (he translated Rizal's Noli Me Tangere into Kapampangan), playwright (Ing Mora/The Moor Maiden), editor, religious writer (he composed original Kapampangan prayers and a Pasyon), grammarian (he authored Gramatica Castellana and Sanayan A Malagwang Pipagaralan King Amanung Kastila) and newspaper man, but he was also a passionate Revolutionist, a military man (a lieutenant colonel under Gen. Tomas Mascardo) and a political leader (Bacolor's presidente for nine years).

Musni said that with Juan Crisostomo Soto, he wrote the zarzuela Ing Singsing A Bacal/The Ring of Steel), which was based on a Spanish play.

Even as he was writing, Galura continued to run the affairs of Bacolor as the town head from 1909 to 1918. He passed away on July 21, 1919, at the age of 53.

For his departed friend, the poet Don Monico Mercado wrote the elegy Ing Bie Na Ning Tau (The Life of a Man).

On December 24, 1924, a monument was put up in front of the Bacolor Elementary School by Aguman 33, a band of grateful citizens and friends, dedicated to the memory of a beloved son of Bacolor -- "Caluguran Nang Anac Ning Baculud" -- Felix Napao Galura.

Musni said the DHVSU and the Municipality of Villa de Bacolor spearheaded efforts to restore Galura's 1924 monument to its former and more seemly location, in a rotunda between the Bacolor Town Hall and the Bacolor Elementary School.

The NHCP unveiled a historical marker of the newly rehabilitated monument during his birth sesquicentennial in 2016.


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