PHOTO CAPTION: All Iloilo government-owned buildings, hospitals, and facilities will fly the Philippine flag at half-mast for seven days as Ilonggos join the Garin family in mourning the recent death of former Iloilo 1st district congressman Oscar Garin, Sr./iNEWS (N. Glenn Aragon/Photo courtesy of Leo Solinap)
ILOILO–As known political families in the province of Iloilo, they may not have always seen eye-to-eye despite being allies for much of the last three decades but Iloilo Gov. Arthur Defensor, Jr. paid the ultimate sign of respect to the recently-departed Guimbal mayor and former Iloilo first district Rep. Oscar Garin with his Executive Order No. 447.
For the next seven days, all buildings, hospitals, and other facilities owned by the Iloilo Provincial Government will fly the Philippine flag at half-mast as a sign of mourning following the demise of the patriarch of Iloilo’s first congressional district.
The EO cited Garin’s introduction of “a number of legislations, programs and initiatives,” first as Congressman representing the First District of Iloilo from 1987 to 1998 and from 2001 to 2004, then as Administrator of the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA), and finally as mayor of the municipality of Guimbal, “during his public service years that made significant impact in the lives of the people of the Province of Iloilo, particularly in the First District.”
To note, many Ilonggos were shocked to know of his passing yesterday afternoon, September 26, from social media posts of his children, including former Iloilo 1st district solon Oscar “Richard” Garin, Jr., Iloilo Vice Governor Christine Garin, and Guimbal Vice Mayor Jennifer Garin-Colada.
His wife, Ninfa Serag-Garin, is the incumbent mayor of San Joaquin, Iloilo, while another daughter, Sharon, is presently AAMBIS-OWA party-list representative. A daughter-in-law, Janet, Richard’s wife, presently sits as Iloilo’s first district representative in Congress.
Early evening yesterday, the family had a “send-off caravan” for Garin from Guimbal to Tigbauan and then Oton towns, where first district residents who wanted to join the family in mourning were asked to light candles and put flowers along the caravan’s route.
His remains were cremated later in the evening and brought back to the Garin residence in Guimbal.
Early last week, it was reported that Garin was hospitalized after getting infected with COVID-19.
Only recently, Defensor and Vice Gov. Garin announced they will be seeking another term as the province’s top two executive officials and as a tandem in the elections next year.
Following the senior Oscar’s death, Guimbal Vice Mayor Jennifer Garin-Colada took her oath as the town’s chief executive today to serve the remainder of his term.
In her Facebook post after the oath-taking, Colada wrote: “Bittersweet…This is for you Tatay. Sworn in as Guimbal’s municipal mayor. I do not expect things to happen this way. Tatay, muja akon fate (Father, is this my fate)? All I feel is that I am missing you.” (N. Glenn Aragon/iNEWS)