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Western Visayas remembers Evelio Javier's assassination

The image of Antiqueño folk hero Evelio B. Javier is etched on a marker inside the public plaza of San Jose de Buenavista which is named after the slain Antique governor.

InterAksyon.com
The online news portal of TV5

SAN JOSE, Antique -- Twenty six years ago, former Antique Governor Evelio B. Javier was fatally shot in broad daylight at the plaza fronting the Antique Provincial Capitol while the canvassing of results of the snap election between then President Ferdinand Marcos and Ninoy Aquino’s widow Cory was going on.

Javier was talking with several friends when hooded men coming from nowhere, some of them were later identified as members of the Philippine Army, shot him.

The first burst of gunfire sent everyone in the plaza scampering for safety while the former governor, knowing that he was the target of the assassins, ran away from the people.

The gunmen chased him until they caught him inside the comfort room at the back of a commercial building near the town plaza, where the assassins riddled his body with bullets.

He was rushed to the Antique Provincial Hospital, where attending physicians declared him dead on arrival.

In today’s Javier death anniversary, a simple day-long commemorative ceremony started with a Pamukaw at 4 a.m. via a motorcade of vehicles playing Evelio Javier’s favorite song “Impossible Dream” going around the towns of San Jose, Sibalom, and Hamtic.

A holy mass at the Mensa Domini chapel follows at 7 a.m. after which his relatives, headed by his younger brother Governor Exequiel B. Javier, friends, and political supporters visited his grave at the San Jose Catholic cemetery.

A program followed at the plaza now named Evelio B. Javier Freedom Park, where local government officials and employees and the people offered flowers to the hero’s bronze statue in his honor.

Children’s games will also be held in the afternoon as well as candle-lighting ceremony at 6 p.m.

 

The day’s activity will be capped by a cavalcade of songs and dances at the EBJ Freedom Park .

 

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