BEHIND THE LINES: Men for others PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 06 December 2014 14:33



San Jose, CA.— If Ateneo high school Class ’59 and Class ’64 possess “great knowledge and persistent wisdom” as I wrote, all the other batches, like theirs and them, live by good example, a paramount gift that they bestow to their fellowmen. They are men and women of extraordinary faculties because they (we) were trained by the Jesuits and their associates to think, to determine right from wrong and to put God and country (Pro Deo et Patria) ahead of everything. The unique discipline inculcated to them (us) has molded them (us) to be “men for others.” Thus, John 10:11, “The good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.”

Ateneans strive for the best to be the best and do, sometimes, almost the impossible. That’s why every first week of December, or the day closest to December 8, the feast of the Immaculate Conception (which, incidentally, is our town fiesta), the Blue Eagles (male and female) congregate in their (ours) La Purisima home to re-examine the educational rank of Ateneo de Zamboanga University in the community so that the alumni and alumnae may determine what courses of action, if need be, that should be taken to help the school maintain or even surpass its educational environment. A tough education sweetens the chances of students landing in respectable, high-paying jobs or endeavors. The aim is to keep the students, like an Eagle, soaring above all others. Why, we even elected a college drop-out as president of the country. Fly high, Blue Eagle, the King.

As I said in my last column, this year’s high school jubilarians are high-profile individuals. Take, for example, Atty. Vic Solis. He was an AFS scholar that took him to the United States — in universities like Stanford near San Francisco and other universities in the east coast. When he went back to Zanmboanga after a year of black angus steaks, pizzas and kellogg’s, he joined the defunct Zamboanga Times as a copy editor when he was in college. After studying law at the Ateneo de Manila University college of law, the rest is sublime history. He is Zamboanga’s lone bar-topnotcher to date, thus should be named the Atenean of the Century.

Another in his class who efficaciously reached self-actualization is Arthur Lopez, a world class hotelier who conquered the concrete jungles of Manila with his boyish looks, nimble mettle, equanimity under pressure (being a provinciano) and sheer common sense (something that’s absent in most people).

His late father, Armando, was the architect of media in Zamboanga, running Zamboanga Times (where I took my vow of poverty to be a journalist as a sports reporter), DXLL radio and TV-3 Zamboanga that produced some of the finest journalists and broadcasters, some of them still breathing, though crackling like a radio interference.

Vic and Arthur always extend their helping hand to Zamboanguenos with wisdom and elegance. I hope both stay healthy and strong.

I know about 20 of their classmates personally, some only by face (as I do the other batches). I wish them the best of both worlds.