Kiki & Lala

Never Forget

Posted on: December 10, 2011

In between Trick Or Treat activities several weeks ago, the clan made a trip to The Aquino Center in Luisita, Tarlac. Being a hard core Ninoy-Cory fan as well as a closet history nerd made me really excited for this trip.

That Sunday it seemed our clan were the only visitors at the Center. As soon as we set foot in the museum, it felt like we were in a church or some sort of hallowed ground. Everyone automatically spoke in hushed tones. And I don’t recall seeing any “Silence Please” signs.

This is the entrance hall where some very dramatic and iconic images greet you.

There are some nice mosaics too.

The museum takes you through Ninoy’s life chronologically. There are many interesting personal effects on display such as the camera he brought with him while covering the Korean War, various hand written notes and the like but the real highlights are the bloodied bush jacket he was assassinated in and the reconstruction of his cell in Bonifacio.

No picture taking is allowed in the actual museum but this image is from Wikipedia.

You really have to make the trip there yourself to understand the feeling of being near the clothes that Ninoy Aquino was murdered in. It will make your hair stand.

Aside from the obvious, the blood stained clothes do have a story of their own. Only on the day of the funeral were they removed from Ninoy’s remains. Soon after, they were sent to some family friends in the US who were tasked with having them properly, expertly preserved. However, because they were so soaked they were told the treatment would not preserve the suit but rather only delay its eventual decay. The suit was tucked up somewhere in the family friend’s home in the US until Tita Cory asked one of her nieces to bring it back to the Philippines shortly before the opening of the museum in 2001.

The other highlight is the exact replica of the 3 x 5 meter prison cell where Ninoy was kept in solitary confinement from over 7 years.

photo credit: onmylefthandcorner.blogspot.com

Aside from marveling at how he kept sane in such cramped quarters, I couldn’t help thinking about how the family managed to keep so much of his stuff – things that I would not think twice about throwing out like his rusty bathroom shelving, old towels and slippers.

The point is, you absolutely come out of there with a whole new appreciation the price Ninoy and Cory paid to precipitate the return of freedom in the Philippines. They don’t make heroes like they used to. But remember:

And if you’d like to visit, here’s the schedule:

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6 Responses to "Never Forget"

We should go on a roadtrip and check this out. Even non-Cory/Ninoy loyalists would learn a thing or two from a visit.

absolutely. it’s part of philippine history – no matter what your opinion of the aquinos is.

I’m getting goosebumps already! More so if I were actually there. Did the pitufos appreciate this?

my pitufo was fascinated. the other pitufos… not so much which just means we all need to go back there again at some point.

Thanks for sharing this. I would not have known they have a museum here if not for your post!
So interesting, I hope I can visit w/ my family soon.

yes! it’s a small museum but i think worth it and definitely a must for those who didn’t live through that time in history.

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