The Search for Juan: The Constabulary School, Part 1

Juan Anderson Hernandez is my great-grandfather and one of the “dead ends” in my genealogy study. I penned an article about him in 2005, documenting all I had been told of his colorful life.

Copyright E. Murray Bruner Family

Among the details I have been trying to look into is my dad’s memory of him being a Superintendent or Commandant of the Philippine Constabulary School, the precursor of the Philippine Military Academy, headquartered at the Cuartel De Santa Lucia (Santa Lucia Barracks) in Intramuros, during the Japanese occupation.  My dad remembers how his father, Segundino Magno, was given a job as a school cook by his father-in-law Juan.  There is a sense of family pride in the lore that Segundino unlocked the armory at night for the guerillas to loot — his tiny contribution to the war effort.  On the flip side, Juan was supposedly tried after the war, together with Laurel and other leaders, for his complicity to the Japanese invaders.  So much data to verify!  I need materials that will collaborate the oral histories.  So off I went to the National Library of the Philippines in TM Kalaw St. Manila today.

In reference to the PMA’s transfer to the Baguio Campus, I found this communique from the American administrators in 1908:

Bureau of Constabulary
Manila, PI
August 1, 1908
General Orders No. 24

1. The following named officers of the class graduated July 31, 1908, at the Constabulary School, having been recommended by the school staff and superintendent for their conduct, application, and proficiency in the course of study, are announced as honor graduates:

Third Lieutenant Bernabe Nicolas.
Third Lieutenant Jose V. Agdamag.
Third Lieutenant Maxon S. Lough.
Third Lieutenant Oliver Soow.

2. The station of the Constabulary School is changed from Santa Lucia Barracks, Manila to Baguio, Benguet.  Santa Lucia Barracks will be used as a station for general service companies and band, quarters for unmarried officers on duty in the city, and casuals.  Detachments from the provinces heretofore directed to report to the adjustant of the Constabulary School will hereafter be ordered to report to the commanding officerm Santa Lucia Barracks, Manila.  The supply officer and supply sergeant of the Constabulary School is discontinued.  Such supplies and property pertains to the school as are considered necessary by the Chief Supply Officer will be shipped to Baguio in time to be available for the term beginning September 1, 1908.  Upon completion of business pertaining to this transfer, officers and employees of the school will proceed by first available transportation to Baguio for duty.  The travel enjoined is necessary for public service (21808-G).

By order of Colonel Harbord:
Acting Executive Inspector

From this, I confirmed what is written on the historial marker at the ruins of the Sta. Lucia Barracks — that the precursor of the PMA moved to Baguio in 1908, a good 35 years before World War II.  Combine this tidbit and the confirmation from PMA that Juan’s name does not appear on the list of PMA superintendents, of Corps of Professors and of Commandants of Cadets, I am ready to disprove one of the family myths and conclude that Juan was never part of that organization.

So, what was the Santa Lucia Barracks used for during the war? My dad remembers it as the Constabulary School; but with the PMA fully transferred to Baguio, who were training there?  This excerpt from the memoirs of an American who served in the Philippine Guerilla Movement clarifies a lot:

In an effort to deal with the guerillas, who were passing from nuisance to menace, the Japanese organized a new Philippine Constabulary. This body should not be confused with the old prewar Constabulary which, along with the Philippine army and Philippine Scouts, had been closely linked to the American army. The new Constabulary was composed, in part, of civilian volunteers and of men who simply needed jobs to feed their families. The core of it, though, consisted of Filipino prisoners taken after the fall of Bataan and Corregidor. These men were gradually released by the Japanese with the proviso that they join the new Constabulary. Nominally, there were then to perform ordinary police duties. Actually, the Japanese planned to train them to become a new army to help defend the Philippines against a possible future American attack. The commander of the new Constabulary was General Guillermo Francisco, a Filipino officer who had served in Bataan and whom the Japanese put though a de-Americanization program before his “promotion”.

So, it seems that my great-grandfather’s Constabulary was Japanese-run and was not part of the Philippine military.   My search for details on Juan continues.

Continue reading “The Search for Juan: The Constabulary School, Part 1”


Philip Dudley Cezar

Philip Dudley Cezar is one of the seven children of David Francisco Cezar and Rebecca Dudley.  Naturally gifted in basketball, the young Philip and his four brothers could easily best older neighborhood kids in the sport.

Philip Cezar

Philip played with the varsity team of Fort Bonifacio High School, and eventually, Jose Rizal College (now University).  Playing beside his brother David, Philip led the JRC Heavy Bombers in their 1972 National Collegiate Athletic Association Championship and was named the NCAA Seniors’ Most Valuable Player that year.

In 1974, Philip Cezar began his career in professional basketball with the Crispa Redmanizers.  Finding the perfect mix of veteran players and fresh collegians, Crispa won the 1974 MICAA summer championship. He was named to the RP National Team which placed 4th in the 1974 Tehran Asian Games.

Philip saw the birth of the Philippine Basketball Association and continued to shine as a professional cager.  He was named PBA MVP in 1980.  Over the years, Philip earned many nicknames that speak on his on-court strengths:  “Mr. Scholar” (he was considered the best “thinking” power forward in the history of the PBA), “Tapal King” (he had long hands that served him well as one of the best defensive players of the league).

In 1990, Philip retired from the game with 12,077 points which secures him a spot as one of the Top 10 all-time PBA scorers.  As a coach, he served as second-in-command to once-rival Robert Jaworski — the head coach of Ginebra San Miguel in the 1990s.  In 2000, he coached the San Juan Knights to a championship in the now defunct Metropolitan Basketball Association.  In 2004, he was named commissioner of the Universities and Colleges Athletic Association for its third season. In 2005, he accepted the job as the new head coach of the Philippine School of Business Administration basketball team.  In 2005, he was among the  twelve initial inductees to the PBA Hall of Fame.

Philip also served the city of San Juan for many years as Vice Mayor, together with Mayor Jinggoy Estrada.

Philip married an Ilokana lass, April Sanidad.  His son Paolo Cezar has also taken to the sport  — having played with the Benilde Juniors team.

Explore Philip Cezar’s family tree:


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Jose Isaac Hernandez

Jose Isaac Hernandez was born in Macabebe, Pampanga to Nicolas Anderson Hernandez, a bookkeeper or tinidor de libro for Ayala y Compañia, the precursor of the Ayala Corporation.

Victory Liner's Jardinera Bus

Jose was an entrepreneur with a knack for mechanics.  After the war, he collected spare parts and surplus engines from M-38 jeeps and Chevy trucks abandoned by the US Forces in the Far East (USAFE), intending to assemble a delivery truck for his family‘s rice-corn-vegetables-laundry soap business.  When his design was completed by the Chinese Po Chuan, it was evident that the the low-profile jardinera bus would be best used for transporting people, not merchandise.

Inspired by a popular term “Victory Joe” and the fact that his nick name was “Joe”, Jose decided to name his post-war enterprise, Victory Liner.  The business started with Jose Hernandez as the bus driver, his wife Marta Dayao Trinidad as treasurer, his in-law Leonardo Dayao Trinidad as conductor, another in-law Santiago Crisostomo (the husband of Marta’s sister Felipa) as relief driver and another in-law Eugenio Dayao Trinidad as helper.  On 15 On October 1945, Jose drove Victory Liner’s first Manila-Olongapo-Manila run.

Over the years, Jose’s company pioneered the converson of front engine buses to steel bodied, the use of diesel fuel, the use of automatic transmission engines, in-transit entertainment, among many.  Victory Liner is one of the largest provincial bus companies operating in the Philippines today.

Explore Jose Hernandez’ family tree:

At the Victory Liner Anniversary,, 1970
Jose and Marta (center, standing) with their employees in 1970.

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Eduardo Alvir Pacheco

Eduardo Alvir Pacheco was born on 04 January 1936.  He married an Hernandez clan member, Maria Lourdes H. Marqueta.

Ed Pacheco

A competitive athlete since his youth, he played varsity basketball and football for San Beda College and the University of Sto. Tomas in the 1950s.  Eddie was a member of the RP Football team to the Asian Games in 1954 and in 1958 and the Asian World Cup in 1963.  Eddie was voted the most outstanding basketball player in 1962 by the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA), and was nicknamed “Mr. Basketball” (and “Mr. Football”).  He was part of the RP National Basketball Team that competed at the 1960 Rome (finished 11th of 16 teams) and 1964 Tokyo Olympics (6th place).   He was also on the team that represented the country in the 1961 Asian Basketball Confederation Championship, the 1962 Asian Games in Jakarta (Gold Medal), the 1963 World Basketball Championships in Manila and the 1966 Asian Basketball Conference in Taiwan.

In the late 1960s, Eddie played jersey number 6 for the YCO Red Painters, a charter team that played in the Manila Industrial and Commercial Athletic Association.  The MICAA was the forerunner of the Philippine Basketball Association, the country’s professional basketball league.

Eddie continued to be active in Philippine sports long after his playing days,  as one of the longest-serving consultants of the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC).  As a football star player and pioneer of the sport in the country, Eddie received a special achievement award from the Philippine Football Federation in 2007.

He passed away on 09 December 2009, after an apparent heart attack, at age 73.  He was among the late sports greats honored by the Philippine Sports Association in their annual awards night in 01 March 2010.

Explore Ed Pacheco’s family tree:

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Idilio and Emilia Crysantemo Magno

The loss of a loved one is often the hardest thing any human being can go through. Today, I honor the many women who have endured the pain of outliving their child and most importantly, who have found the spirit to forge ahead.

My grandmother, Fredesvinda Hernandez Magno was such a woman. She lost two children to disease in the early 1940’s — shortly before the start of World War II and a short time after war ended. Not living to see their fourth birthdays, Idilio and Emilia Crysantemo were not often spoken of at family gatherings — as far as the next generations can recall. No one can remember a commemorated birthday or anniversary. Their brood’s eldest, Carlo Ricardo, who was himself a very small child when his siblings passed, shares faint memories he had of his little brother and little sister:

Idilio Hernandez Magno was born in 1937 in Iloilo City, Iloilo. He is remembered as a handsome boy with Dravidian features. Idilio died of meningitis in 1940 at the age of 3, and was buried at the public cemetery in Iloilo City. In 1948, his parents were blessed with another baby whose face perfectly resembled his. The child was named in his memory — Perfecto Idilio Hernandez Magno.

Emilia Crysantemo Hernandez Magno was born in 1942 in Mandaluyong City. Nanette — remembered as a beautiful, playful child with soulful eyes. At age 2, she developed a lump, which was the beginning of a more serious infection. She soon succumbed to diphtheria. She was buried at the Aglipayan Cemetery in Mandaluyong City.

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Ricardo Magno

Ricardo Magno is the earliest known patriarch in our Magno line — my father’s paternal grandfather. He is one of the stone walls I am facing in tracing my paternal lineage, due to the lack of documentation. What I know, I know from stories from my father (who’s second name is also Ricardo); but I still have many unanswered questions.

1. Ricardo is believed to be from Iloilo City, Iloilo, Philippines; and was born between 1885 and 1900. Documenting his birth has been a challenge as the municipal records of Iloilo were all destroyed in a fire in the 1940s.  [Update as of 13 Apr 2011:  Ricardo was born about 1870.  This I derived from his record on the 1929 Iloilo Death Registy Index]

2.  Family tales say that Ricardo was sent to Spain by his middle-class parents to study medicine.  When he got there, he fell in love with European fashion and ended up studying haberdashery and tailoring instead.  He came home to enraged parents and was disinherited.  Making suits then became his livelihood in his adult life.  Ship passenger lists would be a good starting point to determine if Ricardo made a voyage to Europe.

3.  Ricardo married Teodora Sobrepeña , with whom he had at least five children:  Julio, Segundino, Cecilia, Adelina and Ignacia. I need civil records for data on his marriage to my great-grandmother and the title to the property along 104 C.R. Fuentes Street where my grandfather was raised and my father was born.  What other sources could I consult in lieu of local civil records? Would I find a hint of him in the US Library of Congress — considering the country was a commonwealth of the United States before World War II?

4. My grandfather and father were baptized in the Iglesia Filipina Independiente, a schism started in 1902, borne out of a nationalist sentiment against the abusive Spanish clergy, and eventually the American colonialists. Even if Ricardo was an early convert of the Aglipayan Church, he should still have records with the Catholic parish. Did I just miss his name during my search through the Iloilo diocese records? Or is he a migrant from another place? The Aglipayan Church was most popular in the Ilocos Region, where many Magno’s are from. If I shift my search for Ricardo’s Catholic baptismal record several hundred kilometers north, where should I begin? Which city?

5.  In the present-day aerial map of the Pala-Pala district of Iloilo below, the Terminal Market now stands where the Magno’s home used to be.  It’s is an interesting coincidence that the Philippine Independent Church building is only one small block to the west, on Jalandoni Street. Perhaps there are clues about my ancestor that lies in the church’s early records.

Map: CR Fuentes St, Iloilo

6. Details of Ricardo’s death and that of his wife are also unknown to me. I don’t think I have asked my dad about that — totally forgot. Perhaps that would provide some clues as well.  [Update as of 20 April 2011.  Ricardo Magno died on 17 Mar 1929 in Iloilo City at 59 years old.  He died of pulmonary tuberculosis.  Meanwhile, his wife Teodora Sobrepeña-Magno, died on 16 Jul 1969, in Iloilo at 85 years old from old age.]

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The Magno Family


Pronounced [mag’-no], the family name is derived from the Latin adjective magnus, meaning “great”. It could also mean “large” or “important.”  The spelling variations for this surname include Magnani, Magni, Magnaguti, Magnanini, Magnano, Magni, Magnini, among others. This family name and its derivatives are widely used in Spanish-, French- and Italian-speaking nations.  The name was first found in Bologna, Italy — specifically, the province’s capital, Emilia.

Our Line

The origins of our line can be traced to Iloilo City, Philippines.  Ricardo Magno is the earliest known patriarch of our branch of the Magno Clan.  Due to a fire that destroyed the civil records in the 1940s, very little documentation can be found, making the search for more ancestors particularly challenging.  The Magno surname can also be found in many areas of North Luzon and Bicol; but a genealogical link to these family has not yet been established.

By marriage, the clan is related to other families of note: FranciscoHernandezSan Diego and Sobrepeña. 

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