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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Jose Rizal At 150 Heritage Trail: First National Hero's Monument In Daet, Camarines Norte! !

by: Mhe-anne L. Ojeda

The long weekend was an opportunity to pick up on my Lakbay Jose Rizal 150 Heritage Trail through a road trip with my family. Our destination? my parents hometown Daet, Camarines Norte to see the "First Rizal Monument" in the Philippines!

Located across the Daet Heritage Center, we easily found a white three-tiered 15-feet stone pylon monument with the words 'A Jose Rizal' (To Jose Rizal).Noticeably though, this monument has no sculptured image of our national hero unlike many monuments I have seen in his honor. Instead, the top most triangle has a five - pointed star and atop it is a sun with eight rays (not seen on this picture).

Based on the small black metal marker installed by the National Historical Commission in 1961, the erection of this Rizal monument is "through the voluntary contributions of the people of Camarines Norte led by Lt. Colonels Antonio Sanz and Ildefonso Alegre of the Revolutionary Army".

I have never felt so proud of my hometown after reading the marker! Not only it is home to the first historical landmark unveiled on December 30, 1898, only two years after the martyrdom of our national hero, but CamNorte also holds the title of being the first town to celebrate Rizal Day.

Inscribed on the other square podiums are three of Dr. Jose Rizal’s popular novels — ”Noli Me Tangere” (1887), “Morga” (1889) which is said to be a tribute to Spanish colonization historian Antonio de Morga and “El Filibusterismo” (1891).

I'm glad I have invited my parents to join me in my Lakbay Jose Rizal Heritage Trail. Looks like my parents might be back to their hometown every December 30 to join in the celebration.


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