Let Us Be Heard

The common goal is not only to be watched, but also to be emulated. Let us share our sights and views for the common good, for the betterment of the future and for our children to cherish. Let blood be thicker than water, as ever... my brothers. - magi

This Is Our Story

In the early morning of 08 November 1992, thousands of young men from all walks of life with their own rhymes and reasons and without the cadence pushed their pen for the PNPA Admission Test. Some pens lost their ink, some blotted and some were not just good enough. From several thousands applicants only a few hundreds were qualified. On 10-14 January 1993, the rigid physical, medical and psychological tests further slashed our number. From among the chosen few, only the best remained in the upshot that will try to be among the cream of the nation's finest.

On 12 April 1993 in Camp General Vicente Lim, Calamba, Laguna, the acid test of manhood began to unveil in our Reception Day. Then the roaring thunder of the Corps' sudden "Raaaaahhhh" slowly consumed our confidence, our breath became short, heartbeat became fast and sweat began to roll down our cheeks. We were almost drowned in confusion and we forgot how time traveled. We rolled like barrel, crawled like snakes, pushed-ups, and many others, which we thought, would bring us to the edge of eternity. We stumbled and fell but we kept on.

The days and nights that followed were longer. We woke up before the cockcrow and start the day with our jogs and chants as we measured the oval. Along the way our energy slowly faded and we caught for our breath. Our patience held on and we tried to stretch it to the edge. We learned the basic of drills and manual of arms. Slowly, our movements coordinated in cadence with rhyme and rhythm. However, chosen few as we were, some faltered and fell, the last ounce of courage and hope was drained and they retreated into resignation or went into on AWOL.

We lost one comrade. And as we witnessed some of our brothers leaving, our hopes and the will to go on dwindled. The glory of pain and pressure became our only consolation at the end of the day's toil when the penetrating eyes of the eagles of the Corps rested. And when the dark veil of the night embraced us, silent cries and prayers filled the beast barracks from which we drew our strength for another day. The temptation to flee was always toying in our minds. But we stick and went on, unwilling to fall down on our knees defeated. Determination and meager courage had been our capital and this couldn't be washed away by the sweat and tears we had shed as the Breaking Period tapered to its end, the lions growled louder than ever as we were bombarded with those plebe knowledges. We began to internalize the customs and traditions of the Corp, which defined our movements to the minutest details. Though we could not fathom well, we knew everything had a purpose. And we knew that in every door we enter, there is a way out… We survived the Breaking Period.

Our Incorporation Day was on 04 June 1993. Our parents and loved ones visited us after two long months. Some shed tears and some were overjoyed. The challenges in ourselves physically, mentally, and emotionally put them in awe and made them uneasy. We had changed a lot. We felt deep happiness and relief but we held our tears and emotion inside. To show sentimentalities was taboo.

And then academics began, there was a mixture of eagerness and tepidity. The rigidity of the academics patiently burned the midnight oil. Law enforcement and community policing subjects gave us an outline of the profession. Idealism and principles became our bread and butter until it ran in the underlining of our fibers and blend with the stream of our blood, until it paced with our cadence, our dreams, our songs and poems.

We were recognized as full-pledged members of the Corps on 30 October 1993. This ceremony is one of the much awaited in the cadet life, for it unshackles him from the discomforts and pressures of a rotting plebe. Some of us shed tears of joy and fulfillment as our loved ones again proudly embraced us as we shared with them a brief indelible moment which filled our deep longing, but without a show of emotion.

The Corps has been the midwife men in us, disciplined and measured in every movement with assuring confidence but not flamboyant.

As recognized cadets, a much greater responsibility was laid on our shoulder. We carried the days with more care.

The days became swift and eager. Various dignitaries visited us and they were privileged to witness the splendor of the long maroon line and exhibitions. We earned the respect and admiration.

The narra tree began to shed off its golden flowers and the '94 Sandigans slowly sipped their cup of success, as their dream became a reality unveiled after a long labor and wait. The graduation song echoed through the portals of the Academy and the Alma Mater once again stretched its lips in fulfillment in giving birth to young breed of men who will carry on the ideals and aspirations. Our bond with them has grown more than a brotherhood and we were trapped between our deep attachments that refuse to loosen our embraces and the eagerness to become the King of the Corps. They have been our mentors, our best friends and big brothers who have guided us to become masters of our own destiny.

On 07 April the Sandigans '94 graduated and we realized that parting was such a sweet sorrow. The weight of our steps echoed in our heavy hearts as they walked out from the womb of the Academy.

After more than a decade stay in Camp Vicente Lim, Canlubang, Laguna, and after several plans and attempts, we finally transferred to Camp General Mariano N Castaneda, Silang, Cavite on 13 April 1994 as the “first” class to occupy the new site.

The transfer was a rush and necessary polishing was made for the reception of Class 1996 on 16 April 1994. It was our first "Rraaahhh..." and the scepter of the master of the Corps was laid on our hands. We saw in their faces what we were before and felt the shaking of their nerves and the tapping of their heartbeat. The art of leadership came to us naturally as the leaves of the tree. Their Breaking Period tested their will and determination, and only the best among them remained. The grains were separated from the chaffs, some faltered and fell, and tried to stand again on their feet as a number of them sloped backward and resigned or went on AWOL and their dreams escaped with them.

By the later part of May 1994, we scaled the mountains and cliffs for our Field Training Exercises (FTX), a much-needed preparation for the transfer of the anti-insurgency role of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to the Philippine National Police (PNP) by 1995. The long run drained our endurance and tested our patience and resistance. In the cold dark veil, we conducted night patrolling, where visibility was no more than a tapping distance. Suddenly a burst of fire made us scamper for cover. We went through stinking creeks and we have to submerge when our "enemy" crossed our path. In the following days, we familiarized ourselves with map reading and we're given objectives. The trail was designed for mountain rangers. We skidded down, crawled and climbed the vertical cliff of great heights where we only held on to the roots and grasses. Tactics and maneuvers gave us a fighting chance in our simulated combats. During the unholy hour of the night, we were awakened by the Tactics operation "Overrun". After an hour of sleep, we scampered again for our paraphernalia. Simulated vehicular ambuscades were also conducted. The FTX would not be complete however, without the Australian rappel. And finally, the "Escape and Evasion" which tested our guile and abilities. It was a closed encounter with the real maccoy.

The Class of 1996 was Incorporated on 04 June 1994. On 06 June 1994, the academics opened and we further nourished ourselves with necessary knowledge and information. We took part in the celebration of the Independence Day.

As the day passed, we engaged in several parades, arrival honors, and drill exhibition. On 15 August 1994, the Cadet Corps was a contingent in the PNP Recognition Day. Foreign dignitaries and high government officials visited our new home and were privileged to witness the long maroon line. We also visited several institutions, which has bearing on our profession.

The semestral break gave us a chance to unwind and reunite with our families and friends. We added colors in our life as cadets as the days went by.

On 18 November 1994, the members Class 1996 were recognized. On the following day the Cadet Corps was taking a new form and shape.

On 13 January 1995, the Cadet Corps sent delegates to the World Youth Day where there were blessed by Pope John Paul II in a Holy Mass celebrated inside the University of Santo Tomas. A part of the contingent served as a buffer security for the Pope along his route along the campus.

As our stay in the Academy slowly tapered, the wind from the northeast gently cooled the passing days. Our cadence became relax, though engagements outside always kept us busy. We could smell the sweet breeze of March whispering songs of victory. But we knew it's not over 'til it's over. History is to repeat with sorry schemes where dreams were drowned before they reached the shore, upperclassmen leaving the Academy few days before the graduation. We knew we still have to be up and doing.

On 02 February 1995, we visited Philippine Flying School in Lipa, Batangas. This has been part of the annual activities of the graduating class. We were first treated to a brief orientation where we tried to unravel the link of the profession to ours. Afterwards, we engaged them in friendly games and "boodle fight", and exchanged views and ideas on how we could help each other in the field. We jokingly asked for their air support someday especially that the insurgency problem have been laid onto the shoulders of the PNP. In return, we pledged them rest and recreation to our laughter and contentment. For a brief period of time, we established a bond of brotherhood.

Soon, we'll be part of the catalytic factor for change in government. In our seminar on "Reinventing the Government" on 04 February 1995, we learned the principles of change. Basically, man is the process of becoming what he is not yet, and as we make the best of our stay in the academy, we looked not only into our past and present, and on what degree change has transformed us as we visualized what lies ahead, for if we fail in this, we will certainly miss the unfolding future. We knew there are a lot of things necessary to undergo a painful surgery in the organization, and we are looking for the entry points of change, the types of organizational change and the phases of the change process where we will canalize its direction. A need for new orientation and approach should come to a focus.

Even just as cadets, we tried to have the power of performance measurement, know ourselves and anticipate the future. There is no substitute for preparation, we were told. The complexities of life in the field compelled us to have a foundation built on principles and a backpack of idealism. We knew that the odds maybe overwhelming but we will try to chain to the fold of law. By this, we will try not only to live a life of success, but a life value.

After the narra tree has shed its leaves, it again awakened from its slumber and its leaves peeped through its twigs and branches. As we patiently waited, time seemed to creep so slowly. The season contemplated the prelude to the culmination of our life as cadets; graduation songs echoed through the portals of our Alma Mater. The growing anticipation and thrill almost froze the hands of time and prolonged our waiting. But temperament and calmness amidst turbulence has taught a lesson. We were bred by the virtue and the patience of Job.

By the later part of February, "career talks" gave us a background of work in the three bureaus. A few were undecided whether to join the PNP, the Jail or the Fire Bureau. We chose on the basis of our prospective career patterns, fulfillment and inclination, but still the common denominator is service. The option to choose is hard for some of us because they were torn apart by the glamour and adventure, practicality and personal reasons attached to each bureau. However, separated by the three bureaus, we pledged to live our profession with one goal - to do honor for our Alma Mater.

The sun ray struck the golden flowers of the narra tree as it waived vivaciously with the southeast wind. There was an atmosphere of victory. The trees knew in themselves that to refuse to bear is to perish. And just like ours, the Academy again has been a midwife of new officers and men. Our Alma Mater sang melodies of joy in her fulfillment as she stretched her lips for a smile. One hundred thirty-seven men and a lady of the Patnubay Class of 1995 will join the Corps of Officers of PNP, BJMP and BFP.

Few days before graduation, the nights were longer than the usual than what we usually had. The spirit of success overwhelmed us and kept us awake. We pondered what we gone through and could hear the echoes of the long jogs and chants, the shouts, the pain, the skirmishes and the glory of it all. We tried to recall how many times we hit the ground, the abundant sweat we shed, how our heart shrank in sorrow and how we almost gave up. It was a long and arduous journey we thought, never to do it again. It was like passing through a needle's eye. We could only smile and reminisce the past.

As our names echoed on that glorious day, 08 April 1995, our underclass blew their cheers and hurrahs. Our eagerness to leave was dampened by our longing to stay; we then realized again that parting was such a sweet sorrow. As we shed our maroon uniform we did not say goodbye but rather, we will meet again. Our footsteps were heavy with memories but we knew another voice was calling us. Another chapter is unfolding in our life and we'll try to sketch our names in the pages of history, for Service, Honor and Justice.

The Song That Made Us Through

Bakit kaya, bakit ka ba naghihintay
Na himukin pa, pilitin pa ng tadhana
Alam mo na kung bakit nagkakaganyan
Lumulutang, nasasayang ang buhay mo
At ang ibinubulong ng iyong puso
Natutulog ba ang Diyos, natutulog ba?

At ika'y kaagad sumusuko
Konting hirap at munting pagsubok lamang
Bakit ganyan, nasaan and iyong tapang
Naduduwag, nawawalan ng pag-asa
At iniisip na natutulog pa,
Natutulog pa ang Diyos, Natutulog ba?


Sikapin mo, pilitin mo, tibayan ang iyong puso
Tanging ikaw and huhubog sa iyong bukas
Huwag sanang akalaing natutulog pa ang Diyos
Ang buhay mo ay mayroong halaga sa Kanya.
Dapat nga ba na ikaw ay maghintay
At himukin pa, pilitin pa ng tadhana
Gawin mo na, kung ano ang nararapat
Magsikap ka at magtiwala sa Maykapal
Nakahanda ang Diyos umalalay sa 'yo
Hinihintay ka lang, kaibigan...

(Thanks to Gary V.)

Ganito Kami Noon...

Ganito Kami Noon...
isang araw sa loob ng "melting pot" kung saan kami iniluto. yung iba di nakayanan ang nag aalab na "init" ng apoy... at sila'y lumabas, yung iba nagpaalam at may hindi.

chin in! brace up! no rolling of eyeballs! and hold your bananas!

iho, do you know how to "whisper"?

ang saya-saya pagkatapos mag swimming lesson sa may u.p. los baños

boyti! mukhang may tama ka na ah!

isang typical na araw na absent si "bucket brigade", o kaya si "achong". ano kaya ini-isip ni moc-moc?

break time para maka ligo at mag pose syempre, during "FTX"

ala sige ikot, ikot ng ikot

ooops! huh, huh, unprescribed face!!!

one fine saturday parade and review, aligned ba?

our dear 96 during their "breaking period"

lower, make it lower... 96!

mukhang di nasarapan si bord bart sa "boodle fight" huh?

isang gabing pampatanggal ng buryong

sila ang sumubok kung gaano katotoo ang "DR"

ang sarap maligo, heaven!!!

ala sige takbo!!!

yan ang alignment!!!

isang normal na araw bago pumasok sa silid aralan

mentoring the 96 during their breaking period

sige manong, inspekin mong mabuti baka may "stork" sa loob

announcing the arrival of the new color

ayaw man lang sumaludo ni ginoong panauhin

ang mga "silent drillers"

anong platoon kaya ito? mukhang 1st platoon bravo, aligned eh
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