Former Bacolod Councilor Wilson “Jun” Gamboa Jr. said yesterday that friends of his father, former Assemblyman Wilson Prio Gamboa, described him as “the last great nationalist whose idealism and patriotism has never changed up to the very end.”
Jun Gamboa said his father’s friends former Senators Eva Estrada Kalaw and Rene Saguisag, Vice President Jejomar Binay, and some journalists went to his wake in Manila before his body was flown in to Bacolod yesterday.
Wilson Gamboa’s remains now lie in state at the Rolling Hills Memorial Chapels in Mandalagan, Bacolod City and will be cremated on Saturday after a necrological mass and tribute at the San Sebastian Cathedral at 6 p.m.
His son, Jun, said Kalaw lamented that people like his father “are gradually being taken away us.”
He said he felt sad that his father passed away since he still had many plans. He has sacrificed so much since his childhood, until his life ended.
Jun Gamboa said his father was preparing the pleadings on the PLDT case before he was brought to the hospital. He does not rest and maybe God took him away to tell him, “that is enough,” he said.
The virtue of hard work, and value of patriotism and nationalism, and value of honesty, study and hard work, are among the values their father have instilled in them, Jun Gamboa said.
He recalled that his father’s priority was split between his family and country.
He would dedicate more of his life to his country than to his family, Jun Gamboa said.
“That is why I say, this is the son of Bacolod and Negros whom we are giving back to you,” he said.
They even tried to reach out to him so he would be closer to them his children, he added. He also said his father has fought a good fight, had finished the race and had kept his faith to God, country and family.
Wilson Gamboa’s mother Ma. Concepcion Gamboa, 89, arrived in Bacolod yesterday together with her grandsons Jun, Pipoy and Antonino.
Meanwhile, Mayor Evelio Leonardia signed Executive Order No. 26, Series of 2011, giving honor and recognition to the late former City Councilor Wilson Gamboa Sr. for his significant contribution to the city of Bacolod and directing the observation of a half-mast flag in mourning of his death, a City Hall press release said.
Leonardia, in his E.O. signed yesterday, said that the former city councilor, an institution and an important political and civic figure in the city, had considerably and momentously served for two terms. He has served in the national government as Secretary of Agrarian Reform, Undersecretary of National Defense, and Administrator of the Sugar Regulatory Administration.
Gamboa Sr. contributed selflessly to the betterment of Bacolod and as such the city will forever be grateful to him, the mayor said.
Wilson Gamboa Sr. is the father of former City Councilor Wilson Gamboa Jr.
His remains will lie at the Rolling Hills Memorial chapels annex until Oct. 21.*CGS