Press Release
August 20, 2016


Albeit her father being a hero to many, Sen. Grace Poe is not interested in moving National Artist Fernando Poe, Jr.'s remains at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.

"Mapayapa na ang kinalalagyan ni FPJ sa Manila North Cemetery. Malapit sya at pwedeng madalaw ng pangkaraniwang tao na sinimbulo at minahal nya. At nandoon din nakahimlay ang kanyang mga magulang," said Poe, when asked about the issue.

National artists are eligible for interment at the Libingan ng mga Bayani for having made significant contributions to the development of Philippine arts. At present, there are over 40 national artists buried at the said cemetery.

A thanksgiving mass marked the 77th birth anniversary of FPJ today, Aug. 20, attended by her mother Susan Roces who gave a touching speech. Poe's husband Neil Llamanzares and children Brian, Hanna and Nika also laid flowers on FPJ's grave.

In her short speech, Poe thanked FPJ's supporters who continue to remember her father over the years. "Marami tayong ipinaglalaban, gusto natin ng kaayusan at kapayaan. Gusto nating bigyan ng oportunidad ang ating mga kababayan--sapat na pagkain, trabaho at magandang edukasyon. Patuloy natin itong isusulong saan man tayo," Poe said.

For her part, Roces reminisced how FPJ would always hold a simple celebration on his birthday. "Tuwing sasapit ang kaarawan ni FPJ, simpleng handaan lang ang nais nya. Ayaw nya ng magarbo. Gusto nya na sama-sama ang magkakatrabaho at mga tagahanga. Saan man sya abutin ng birthday, doon ang handaan," said Roces, who portrays Lola Kap in the television remake of FPJ's Ang Probinsyano.

Also paying tribute to the king of Philippine movies were supporters from the Filipino for Peace, Justice and Progress Movement also known as FPJPM and Gawa at Prinsipyo Coalition, among others. FPJ's relatives from Pangasinan also attended the occasion.

FPJ was born on August 20, 1939. He was declared a National Artist posthumously. He starred in and produced more than a hundred films including Ang Panday and Kapag Puno na ang Salop.

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