National Artist Alejandro Roces dies at 86
(SPOT.ph) National Artist Alejandro "Anding" Roces passed away this morning, May 23, according to colleague and family friend Cecile Guidote Alvarez, who informed GMA News. He was 86. As of press time, GMA has not confirmed the cause of death.
A dramatist, writer, essayist, Roces was also the chair and president of the College Assurance Plan Foundation as well as chair of the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board in 2001, revealed a biography on the Roces clan. It also mentioned that Roces became president of the Bulletin Publishing Corporation and was appointed Dean of the Institute of Arts and Science at the Far Eastern University where he took his Masters.
In the field of literature and journalism, Roces had an impressive portfolio with books that featured short stories (including We Filipinos are Mild Drinkers, My Brother's Peculiar Chicken); Fiesta is a book of essays about local festivals.
Roces also kept a column Roses and Thorns for the Philippine Star which was also featured in Manila Times and the Daily Mirror.
As Education Secretary from 1961 to 1965, Roces managed to meet up with the thief who stole the Jose Rizal's manuscripts. He demanded to have them back for P1 million pesos, the maximum amount the government can afford, reports GMA News.
According to the biography, his various involvements earned him a place in the Philippine Star's "World's Who's Who" dated on May 21, 2000, which featured achievers and contributors from the world over. A year before that, Roces was also granted the Parangal Sentenyal sa Sining at Kultura for contributions to cultural dissemination. He was named National Artist in 2003.
In a 2002 interview, Roces said that his experiences "made (him) a better person. You cannot be a great writer, first you have to be a good person."
According to GMA's report, Roces' remains will be cremated on Monday afternoon and will be brought to his Makati home after. His family will also hold a meeting to arrange a tribute for him.
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