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The Town of Lubao, Pampanga

"Land of the Brave"
by Alejandro S. Camiling, CPA with Teresita Z. Camiling, BSE, MA


St. Augustine's Parish Church of Lubao, PampangaPrior to the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors in the Philippines in the 16th century, Lubao was one of the three oldest settled communities in Pampanga with advanced culture and civilization. It was then a large territory, which extended to the present boundaries of the provinces of Bataan, Tarlac and Bulacan. Believed to have been founded by Malays, it was once governed by a native chief named Datu Macabulos assisted by a council of elders. Even the famous Rajah Soliman and Rajah Lakan Dula, descendants of the ancient royalty of Brunei were presumed to have loyal Lubenian warriors who fought with them in many wars to repel foreign invaders. As the Lubenians are known for their bravery and valor in battles, the Spaniards had to skirt Lubao when they were colonizing the Pampanga hinterland. In 1572, the power of the Christian cross converted many Lubenians to the Roman Catholic faith and their first church, one of the oldest churches in the Philippines was constructed in barrio Santa Catalina and transferred to its present site thirty years later.

Lubao Municipal HallLubao which was once also called Baras derived its present name from a Kapampangan word meaning "outside of the narrow sea between two isles", is typically rural and it is endowed with fertile land and water resources very rich in marine life. Farming and fishing are the main sources of livelihood of its industrious people. Its current geographical area is situated in the southwestern part of Pampanga bounded in the north by the municipality of Floridablanca, in the east by the municipality of Guagua, in the south by the town of Sasmuan and in the west by the Province of Bataan.

Lubao catapulted to international prominence when one of its favorite sons, President Diosdado P. Macapagal was elected to the presidency of the Republic of the Philippines on November 14, 1961.

His dedication to public service is carried on by his three offsprings namely, former Pampanga Vice Governor Cielo Macapagal-Salgado, former president of the Philippines Gloria Macapagal Arroyo who also served as Senator as well as Vice President and former Undersecretary of Finance Diosdado Macapagal, Jr.
President Diosdado P. Macapagal’s two grandsons, former Pampanga Vice Governor Juan Miguel Macapagal Arroyo and Diosdado Macapagal Arroyo, sons of former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and Mike Arroyo are also members of the House of Representatives of the Philippines.
Lubao, which is blessed to have produced two elected presidents of the Republic of the Philippines, is ably led by the energetic and well-respected Mayor Mylyn Pineda-Cayabyab who ran unopposed in the May 2010 national election.
The following served also as municipal executives (mayor, alcalde, presidenti municipal, etc.):

Years in Office
Mylyn P. Cayabyab
2010 - present
Dennis G. Pineda
2001 - 2010
Lilia Pineda
1992 - 2001
Conrado Jimenez
1986 - 1992
Anastacio Bernal
1980 - 1986
Salvador Dimson
1968 - 1980
Josefo Lingad
1965 - 1968
Anastacio Bernal
1964 - 1965
Emiliano Malit
1961 - 1963
Dominador Danan
1952 - 1960
Eloy Baluyut
1945 - 1951
Roman Kabiling
1938 - 1944
Angel Morales
1934 - 1938
Alejandro Barin
1931 - 1934
Angel Morales
1928 - 1931
Quintero Aranita
1925 - 1928
Angel Morales
1923 - 1925
Julian Vitug
1919 - 1923
Juan Rivera              
1913 - 1919
Esteban Vitug
1910 - 1913
Quintin Romero
1907 - 1910
Urbano Beltran
1905 - 1907
Eugenio Fernandez
1901 - 1905
Luciano Vitug Dimatulac
1898 - 1900
*Source of the List of Mayors: Dr. Rodrigo M. Sicat’s "Lubao – The Cradle of Kapampangan Civilization"

This peaceful and prosperous first class municipality showed its love and divine compassion for thousands of Pampangans who became unwilling victims of the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo. Lubenians shared their economic wealth and provided these unfortunate and homeless people the shelter they needed until such time they were able to be on their own. This was made possible through the generposity, resourcefulness and efficient leadership of the then Honorable Mayor Lilia G. Pineda who was also the president of the Pampanga and Central Luzon Mayors League.

Lubao has an annual income of more than fifty million pesos to run the municipal government and to finance the town's carefully planned capital projects such as concrete roads, school classrooms, barangay halls, artesian wells, etc..

Second to the town of Porac in land area in Pampanga, it covers about 156 square kilometers under its present jurisdiction. Its population of 113,358 souls (as of the 1995 census) is spread over the following forty-fiver (45) barangays:

Barangays of Lubao
Balantacan Remedios San Nicolas 2nd Santa Cruz
Bangcal Pugad San Agustin San Pablo 1st Santa Lucia
Bangcal Sinubli San Antonio San Pablo 2nd Santa Maria
Baruya San Francisco San Pedro Palcarangan Santa Monica
Calangain San Isidro San Pedro Saug Santa Rita
Concepcion San Jose Apunan San Roque Arbol Santa Teresa 1st
Del Carmen San Jose Gumi San Roque Dau 1st Santa Teresa 2nd
De la Paz San Juan San Roque Dau 2nd Santiago
Don Ignacio Dimson San Matias San Vicente Santo Cristo
Lourdes San Miguel Santa Barbara Santo Domingo
Prado Siongco San Nicolas 1st Santa Catalina Santo Nino
      Santo Tomas

Lubao is proud to have reared many Lubenians who excelled in government service and/or in their respective professions and undertakings. To name a few, in addition to the "Poor Boy From Lubao" lovingly called Cong Dadong, are:

Rogelio de la Rosa
Popular stage and movie actor who was elected a senator in the early '60s. He campaigned for the Philippine presidency but aborted his candidacy before the scheduled election. He joined the department of foreign affairs as an ambassador for many years.

Leandro Ibarra
Secretary of Interior of the Philippine Revolutionary Government under General Emilio Aguinaldo.

Jose B. Lingad
World War II military officer who later served as provincial governor of Pampanga, congressman of the first district and commissioner of the Bureau of Customs , the Games and Amusement Board and the Bureau of Internal Revenue.

Hugo Gutierrez, Jr.
A pillar of the legal profession who served as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the Philippines.

Dominador Danan
Designated as Bureau of Prisons Director and Caloocan City Chief of Police in the '60s.

Colonel Jesus "Romy" Tayag
President Diosdado Macapagal's security officer who was later appointed as Chief of Police of Caloocan City.

Captain Jose Salvador Manuel
The youngest Chief of Police of Lubao at the time of his appointment and who was credited of saving the lives of many Lubenians from the cruelties of the Japanese soldiers during World War II.

Angel "Star" Macapagal
Served as vice-governor of Pampanga and elected as congresman of the 1st District of Pampanga in the '60s.

Anastacio Bernal
An architect by profession, he was elected as municipal mayor of his hometown and appointed as Chairman of the Board of Examiners for Architects.

Concordia Kabiling Vitug
A doctor of pharmacy who was designated as Chairperson of the Board of Examiners for Pharmacists in the Philippines by President Diosdado P. Macapagal. She is the founding president of the Lubenians of California and the Hormiga de Hiero Association USA.

Benito Manalansan
A successful lawyer who became General Manager of the National Rice Corporation (NARIC) of the Philippines.

Conrado Manalansan
Well-known sugar and rice planter who was appointed to head Sugar Quota Administration.

Emigdio L. Lingad
A political science scholar in California who returned to his homeland to follow the political legacy of his father, Governor/Congressman Jose B. Lingad. Emigdio was elected as congressman in his first try for a political office.

Jesus C. Razon
A prominent lawyer and government scholar sent to the USA. He served as foreign department director and deputy governor of the Central Bank of the Philippines. He was appointed as the founding or first chairman of the Philippine Deposit and Insurance Corporation (PDIC). His daughter, Henedina who is married to Secretary of Education and former congressman Florencio Abad, was elected representative of the lone district of Batanes in the May 2004 election.

Theresa Zuсiga Camiling-Gutierrez
Theresa Zuñiga Camiling-GutierrezBorn in the City of San Fernando in the Province of Pampanga, Philippines and with heritage in the three towns of Lubao, Apalit and Bacolor in the same province, she is a pride of Filipino-Americans for her scholastic and outstanding professional accomplishments. As an active community organizer and  strong advocate of the propagation of her native language and culture, she founded the Philippine-American Youth Association in the cities of Altadena and Pasadena, California. She was the first Filipino-American Field Office Director of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Chairperson of the Federal Executive Board of Greater Los Angeles.

Prior to assuming the role of Los Angeles Field Office Director in December 2003, Theresa was the Field Office Director for the Santa Ana, California HUD Office, and had been a Project Director for a real estate auction marketing firm, a Marketing Vice President, a commercial and residential Real Estate Agent, and the head of a nonprofit housing organization. The spirit she brought to HUD’s Los Angeles Office and Santa Ana, California HUD Field Office magnified her efforts to support low-income families as they strive to live the American Dream. As an Environmental Health Specialist with the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services she investigated and issued Notices of Violations of health and safety codes in the arena of Housing as well as retail food handling.
Educated at the University of Southern California, Theresa had served on the boards of several nonprofit housing organizations throughout Southern California. She joined HUD in 1999 as a Community Builder Fellow and graduated from the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government Executive Management Program. After her fellowship, she became a career Community Builder and was promoted later to Senior Community Builder for the Santa Ana, California HUD Office. In April of 2002, she was selected as the Santa Ana, California Field Office Director and then transferred to the Los Angeles, California HUD Field Office in 2003. For her outstanding achievements as a US federal governmental agency executive, she was recognized and awarded plaques of appreciation by the Inspector General of the US Department  of Housing and Urban Development, the United States Office of Personnel Management in Washington DC and by the Federal Executive Board of Greater Los Angeles.

Floro Dabu
Famous medical doctor who became Secretary of the Department of Health of the Philippines.

Amable Aguiluz
President Diosdado P. Macapagal's financial adviser whom he appointed as Budget Commissioner and Treasurer of the Philippines:

Diosdado Aguiluz
Another presidential confidant who served as director of the Bureau of Prisons in the Philippines.

Cornelio Regala
Well-known businessman and government executive who directed the Philippine Bureau of Printing.

Jose Regala
Eminent member of the legal profession who became the administrator of the City of Manila.

Antonio Ibarra
Another topnotch lawyer and tough prosecutor who became Assistant Solicitor General of the Philippines in the '60s..

Orlando Macaspac
Honest and efficient police officer who rose to the rank of general in the Philippine National Police.

Roman Kabiling
Wealthy sugar and rice planter who devoted many years of public service as municipal mayor of his beloved hometown.

Salvador Dimson
An engineer by profession and a descendant of the famed Dimson clan, he turned to politics in the early '60s to the late '80s. He faithfully served the people of Lubao as municipal mayor for several terms and spent his later life in southern California but returned to his hometown before he joined his Creator in the mid-90s.

Rodrigo M. Sicat, PhD 
Writer and Researcher. He is the Dean of the Graduate School and College of Public Administration at the Tarlac State University.
Gonzalo Tungul 
Former Executive Assistant at the Office of the Mayor and elected in the May 2010 General Election as Municipal Councilor of Lubao, Pampanga.
John S. Manalili
Well-known Journalist and Broadcaster.

Teresito L. Lingad
Former Municipal Councilor of Lubao, Pampanga who was elected as a Provincial Board Member in the May 2010 General Election.

Salvador B. Dimson, Jr 
Former Vice Mayor of Lubao, Pampanga who was elected in the May 2010 General Election as Provincial Board Member of the Province of Pampanga. 
Dennis G. Pineda 
Former mayor of Lubao, Pampanga and president of the Pampanga Mayors League.
Lilia Pineda
Philantropist and Political Leader. Three-term mayor of Lubao, Pampanga and former provincial board member. She was also elected as Governor of the Province of Pampanga in the May 2010 Election.

Zenaida C. Ducut
Former Congresswoman representing the 2nd District of Pampanga who was also appointed by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo as Chairperson of the Energy Regulatory Commission.

Alejandro Z. Barin, Jr.
Presidential Adviser and Commissioner of the Energy Regulatory Commission.

Betty Lim
Successful businesswoman and former Provincial Board Member of Pampanga.

Mylyn Pineda Cayabyab
A very promising young, energetic and compassionate mayor of the historic town of Lubao who ran unopposed in the May 2010 national election. Her accomplishment in municipal governance in the first 100 days of her administration is commendable.
She is also the current treasurer of the Pampanga Mayors League headed by Mayor Jerry Pelayo of Candaba, Pampanga.

Ernesto Turla
A public school teacher, a writer and an advocate of the preservation of the Kapampangan language, he is the author of a Kapampangan-English Dictionary and a Collection of Kapampangan Poems. As a socio-civic leader and a poet laureate, he was the first president of the Aguman Kapampangan of the Northwest USA and the founding president of the Academia Ning Amanung Sisuan International which is currently chaired (Board of Directors) by Andro S. Camiling, a researcher, historian and writer on Kapampangan history, language and culture.

William Fassoth Sr.
An unheralded hero during World War II who established the Fassoth Camps in the foothills of the mountains of Bataan and Zambales to give shelter, food and medical care to hundreds of American and Filipino soldiers after the Fall of Bataan on April 9, 1942.  He and his twin brother, Martin Fassoth were incarcerated later by the Japanese Imperial Army at the notorious Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija Prison-Camp during World War II. His wife, Catalina and two sons, William Jr and Vernon Fassoth continued helping American and Filipino soldiers while William Sr and Marin Fassoth were confined at the Cabanatuan Japanese Prison-Camp.

On January 30, 1945, more than a hundred men of the United States Army's 6th Ranger Battalion and Alamo scouts and 275 Filipino guerrillas under the command of Captain Juan Pajota and Captain Eduardo Joson liberated the Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija Prison-Camp. More than five hundred Allied prisoners-of-war and civilians including William Fassoth Sr.and his twin brother, Martin Fassoth were rescued.

William Fassoth Sr., son of John Fassoth, a former member of the Legislature of Hawaii and Anna Decker Fassoth who owned a sugar plantation and sugar mill in Maui, Hawaii, was an American capitalist who invested in the Philippine sugar industry. He leased 457 hectares of  land from the Dinalupihan Estate owned by the Roman Catholic Church and another 100 hectares from private individuals. He raised cattle and other domesticated animals in his farm and planted sugar cane for milling at the Pampanga Sugar Mills (PASUMIL) in Del Carmen, Floridablanca, Pampanga. In 1915, he married the former Catalina Dimacali of Santo Tomas, Lubao, Pampanga. The Fassoths settled and raised their family in Lubao where they also had a palay hacienda and a rice mill.

In the field of business, agriculture and other professions, Lubao is fortunate to present to the whole world many individuals who excelled in their respective undertakings.

Self-made millionaires Regalado Montemayor, founder of X'or Studios and Rodolfo Bong Pineda, the benefactor of many young people who need monetary assistance in pursuing their education and poor people who need financial help for medical care and other personal necessities are also natives of this community. The rice and sugar industries owe a debt of gratitude for the major contribution in rice and modern sugar growing technology of Lubenian rice and/or sugar magnates Don Martin Gonzales, Don Rufino Dimson, Don Pedro Barin, Dona Teodorica Arrastia-Reinares, Colonel Eloy Baluyut, Pragmacio Vitug, Ursino Manalansan, Dionisio V. Zuniga and presidential confidant and legal adviser Atty. Alejandro Z. Barin.

In music, the world famous concert pianist, Cecile B. Licad calls Lubao as her hometown. In the movie industry, Lubenians who made the headlines were Jaime de la Rosa; Africa de la Rosa, Engracio Ibarra and movie director Gregorio Fernandez. The debonair movie and television star Rudy Fernandez and the beautiful and expressive Letty Arrastia known as Letty Alonzo, wife of the late movie and TV personality, Mario Montenegro are also Lubenians.

Success of many Lubenians in various professions is attributed primarily to the existence of not only good public and parochial schools in Lubao but also the establishment and operation of non-sectarian private institutions such as the Lubao Institute which is owned by Jeremias and Maria Rosario Garcia and the Santa Cruz Central Institute which is managed by the Jimenez family.

Lubao was once also a center for the production of stage plays known as Zarzuelas and the hometown of great writers. Some of Lubao's great writers are award-winning poet laureate Delfin T. Quiboloy; short story writer Constantino T. Quiboloy, whose articles were published in the Manila Sunday Times Magazine, the Tribune, Focus and Kislap-Graphic; Kapampangan playwright Urbano Macapagal of "Bayung Jerusalem" fame; the energetic intellectual Francisco Cunanan, an administrative assistant to the mayor's office and Editor-In-Chief of the Kapampangan newsletter, "Ing Sulu"; Bienvenido N. Santos, the author of two masterpieces "The Scent of Apples" and "The Volcanos" although born and raised in Manila, he considered himself from Lubao, hometown of his parents and so with Jose Luna Castro, Editor-In-Chief of the Manila Times.

In times of war to defend democratic ideals and freedom, Lubenians are always ready and willing to answer the call of duty. Three of the well-known Philippine guerrilla commanders in the forties who fought valiantly against the Japanese Imperial Forces during the Japanese occupation of the motherland were Abelardo Zuniga (aka Commander Verzosa), Abelardo Dabu and Silvestre Liwanag (aka Commander Linda Bie) of Lubao. During World War II Lubenians rescued, protected and fed thousands of American and Filipino prisoners of war when the Death March from Bataan passed through the patriotic and historic town of Lubao.

(Email the author:  [email protected])


About the Authors:

Andro and Tess Z. Camiling are conscientious researchers and writers of Kapampangan history, language and culture. They wrote “Pampanga: History and Culture", "Pampanga: Towns and Barangays", "The Province of Pampanga and Its People” and other articles including “Malay Relation With Kapampangan Language and Culture”, "Spanish Relation With Kapampangan Language and Culture", biographies of eighteen (18) famous Kapampangans and the history of the towns of Apalit, Lubao, Masantol, Mexico, Minalin, San Fernando, San Luis, San Simon and Santo Tomas of the Province of Pampanga, Philippines. Andro is a true-blue Kapampangan based in California USA where he was employed and retired as an accounting/financial director at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles and practiced his CPA profession as a management and tax consultant. He is a Pampanga High School Centennial Awardee as an Outstanding Alumnus in the Field of Accountancy and a recipient of the City of San Fernando’s 2011 Outstanding Fernandino Award for Culture. His wife and co-author of the aforementioned articles, the former Teresita Manalansan Zuniga of Lubao, Pampanga, Philippines is a retired public school teacher in Pasadena, California. She was honored and awarded with Certificates of Recognition by the California State Assembly and the California State Senate for her outstanding dedication to teaching when she retired in 2003. Andro and Tess are dedicated socio-civic-religious leaders in their community and served as long-term presidents of their town non-profit charitable organizations in the USA.