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EULOGY/ED ANGARA/BY GEORGE BRIONES
5/21/2018 6:29:35 AM

ED ANGARA---“MR. SIGMA RHO”

Eulogy for Senator Edgardo J. Angara delivered by Atty. George S. Briones on 17 May 2018 at Heritage Park, Taguig City.

When you talk of Ed Angara you are talking of the history of Accralaw, the history of the IBP, the history of UP, the history of the Senate, the history of his beloved province of Aurora, but more importantly for us tonight, you are talking of the history of the Sigma Rho Fraternity of the UP College of Law.

You are talking of Sigma Rho’s 80 glorious years as Seekers of the Right. You are talking about the Sigma Rho’s long tradition of making leaders, scholars, gentlemen and warriors. And when you talk of the Sigma Rho you are talking of Ed Angara.

Such is his contribution to the Sigma Rho Fraternity that with the passing of Senator Edgardo J. Angara---which we all mourn tonight---the Sigma Rho will never be the same again. To me the Sigma Rho is Ed Angara. And Ed Angara is the Sigma Rho.

When I joined the Sigma Rho in 1970 I never knew that my life would cross paths with this giant in the field of law and education, a great statesman and a tireless public servant and Senator of the Republic, the best President our country never had.

But that is the privilege of being a Sigma Rhoan. You get to meet Edgardo Angara you work for him and learn from him and be helped by him get your place in the legal firmament always in the Sigma Rho’s best tradition of excellence.

This is the story that everyone of us will tell tonight, how Ed Angara gave us the breaks that helped us succeed in life. Ed Angara helped all of us in a grand manner for he loved us his brother Sigma Rhoans in the same way that he loved his people and his country.

I graduated from the College of Law in 1978 and passed the bar in 1979, and Boy Reyno took me in the group of Ed Angara and Johnny Ponce Enrile. Boy Reyno who was at the Ministry of National Defense assigned me to brod Rolly de la Cuesta who was Chairman of the Philippine Coconut Authority. When we would go to UCPB, brod Joe Concepcion was there with Teddy Regala assisted by Ely Reyes and Mervyn Encanto. Manny Abello was at Accra together with Boy Lazatin and Frank Drilon. It was a rare privilege to be part of this group of Sigma Rhoans.

In 1979, Ed Angara was the National President of the IBP. So classmate Ogy Yabes and myself became very active at the IBP where later I was Deputy Executive Director to National IBP President Presby Velasco. I would eventually become President of the IBP Quezon City Chapter thanks to the mentorship of Ed Angara, of which I am very proud of up to today.

In 1981 Ed Angara became UP President. So we shifted our focus on how to help UP. I remember Ed Angara told Boy Lazatin that the only way to galvanize the support of the UP alumni is if we win the basketball championship in the UAAP. So Ogy and I got hold of brod coach Joe Lipa and sent him to Indiana where Ogy was an alumnus to train under Bobby Knight. Joe Lipa learned a lot from Bobby including how to swear and curse, and how to be a champion. We recruited Benjie Paras and Ronnie Magsanoc offering no money but only a good UP education. In 1986, after 40 years, under the leadership of Ed Angara UP became UAAP basketball champions. Finally we had a bonfire in Diliman.

In 1983 Ed Angara then organized all the UP Alumni Chapters in the world to celebrate UP’s Diamond Jubillee who contributed to raise P75 million in private funds for the biggest faculty endowment of the university to improve the quality of UP education.

Around this time I was still a bachelor and I had a girl friend who went to New York and I would follow her to the ends of the earth. But to do that I had to find a job in New York. So I went to Ed Angara at the UP Executive House and told him of my plans and asked if he could introduce me to brod Paeng Salas for a possible position at the UN. Ed took out his UP President stationary and in his own handwriting right there and then wrote a glowing letter of introduction addressed to Paeng Salas with a very strong recommendation for my employment to any position commensurate to my qualifications. There is no other brod occupying a very high office who wrote for me a letter of recommendation in his own handwriting than Ed Angara. So I cherish that letter.

I was not fated to live abroad so in December 20, 1985 I got married to my beloved wife Jo here in the Philippines. Jo and I will celebrate our 33rd anniversary this year. My Ninong was Ed Angara and my Ninang was his beloved the beautiful Gloria Angara. Rolly de la Cuesta was also my Ninong, and his wife Roxana de la Cuesta, a sister Deltan, our Ninang. And Boy Reyno and his wife Yolly, Ninong and Ninang also. My abays were ka batch Acting Chief Justice Tony Carpio of the Supreme Court, Boy Lazatin, my ka batch Grand Archon Lucien Sayuno and ka batch Atty. Ferdie Domingo. My best man was Mr. Bal Fonacier. So you see brods I followed the lead of Ed Angara. In my l



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