Today is Rizal Day around the world, the day is a Philippine national holiday commemorating the life and works of José Rizal.

Airdrie hosted a wreath-laying ceremony today at the Dr. José Rizal Monument at Nose Creek Regional Park.

Among the officials attending the event are Consul General Zaldy Patron, Blake Richards, MP for Airdrie-Banff, Tina Petrow, Airdrie Deputy Mayor and many more.

Dr. Rizal was born on June 19, 1861. During his lifetime, he would become a key figure in demanding political reforms when his country would be under the colonial power of Spain. It is believed his writings in part inspired the Philippine Revolution and ultimately led to the independence of his country. Rizal was executed on December 30, 1896, by the Spanish colonial government.

The Dr. José Rizal Monument, was unveiled on October 23 2021 and is the first such monument of the Philippines’ national hero in the province of Alberta. A historical marker from the National Historical Commission of the Philippines was unveiled on June 19, 2022, designating the monument as a Philippine historical site.

"It's a big thing for us having this monument here. It symbolizes the acceptance and recognition of the Alberta government for the large community here in Alberta," stated Patron.

Alberta is home to around 217,000 Filipinos.

AirdriePhoto of everybody that attended.

After the ceremony, Richards presented certificates to Filipino Canadians who demonstrated excellence in serving their community. Those people are:

  • Jun Martin (Airdrie)
  • William Sotto (Airdrie)
  • Monica Bautista (Cochrane)
  • Michael Bautista (Cochrane) 
  •  Edwin Aguanta (Cochrane)
  • Jyn San Miguel (Canmore) 

"We are very proud to have the monument here in Airdrie and very happy to see so many people out here celebrating," stated Petrow.

The monument’s three-foot Rizal bust, atop the seven-foot pedestal, was made by noted Filipino sculptor Toym Imao and was shipped from the Philippines.

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