From a little boy’s first to a centenarian’s milestone
Live your life daily with a purpose. And if your life lasts 100 years or more, then you have much to be grateful for.
Celebrating with Urdaneta Village’s most senior resident, Manolo Carmona, who turned 100 on Dec. 14, I felt the overwhelming love and gratitude of his family and friends.
Family is keeping Tito Manoling strong and sharp. His children—Mayenne Carmona, Annie and Thomas Kunhke, Ludette and JP Corcellut, Bing Carmona, Marisa and Steven Chan, and Leana and Charlie Carmona—hosted a wonderful celebration at Urdaneta Village’s Friendship Hall where he used be the Sunday Mass lector for many years, and is still a lay minister.
His wife, Josefa Ponce de Leon Carmona, would’ve been married to him for 75 years this 2019. Unfortunately she passed away two years ago. But that was still an amazingly long married life, blessed with eight children (Yeng and Robert have also passed away), seven grandchildren and three great-grandkids.
Momentous and rare
Friends and relatives from all over the world flew in to attend the celebration. Commenting that it is so rare to attend a 100th birthday, everyone made sure not to miss the momentous occasion. The party started with a thanksgiving Mass officiated by healing priest Fr. Fernando Suarez.
Attended by 170 friends and relatives, the milestone also had the centenarian’s golf buddies from Wack Wack all present.
After the touching speeches of longtime friend Francis de Borja and Golden Tee Golf partner Vicky Schmid, Ramon Jacinto and his band kept the party swinging till midnight.
Enjoying life in one’s 80s is also a wonderful reason to celebrate. My mother Marixi Rufino Prieto hosted a Christmas party for her Assumption High School Batch 1956. Several of them are celebrating their 80th birthday this year.
This month alone, Sally de Leon Paz, Lirio Mapa and Vicky Cruz turn 80, and will celebrate with their families and close friends.
Half a century is also a long time and another important milestone to celebrate. Top implant surgeon, GAOC’s Dr. Steve Mark Gan, marked his 50th birthday surrounded by his wife Marilyn and kids, his GAOC family, closest friends, business and industry associates, industry partners, including his A-list patients, at the Revel Bar in Taguig.
Among the guests were Sen. Koko Pimentel and his wife Kathryna, Sen. Bong Revilla, Sen. Nancy Binay with husband Jose Benjamin Angeles, Doctors Z and Aivee Teo, Cathy Valencia, and Dr. Darwin Lim.
Also present were SBS Philippines Corp. president Necisto Sytengco, PNB EVP Chet Luy, and House of Investments president and CEO Lorenzo Tan.
Of course, Dr. Gan’s celebration will not be complete without his celebrity patients and friends like Vina Morales, Sam Milby, Erich Gonzales, Ruffa Gutierrez, Coleen Garcia-Crawford, Janeena Chan and Gab Valenciano, to name a few.
Global partners and associates also flew in to join the celebration, including Straumann’s Philip Neusche, Bangkok International Dental Center CEO Dr. Pornsak Tantapakul, top international dental surgeons like Dr. Warong Sukchotrat of Thailand, Dr. Lee Soon Boon of Malaysia and Dr. TC Phua of Singapore, and businessmen Kevin Liang from Singapore and Norbert Emerich from Germany.
Adapting a 1920s theme for his 41st birthday, Sen. Manny Pacquiao celebrated his milestone at Makati Shangri-La. Guests marveled at the beautiful décor with numerous fresh red Ecuadorian roses, and enjoyed flowing bubbly. Several cash prizes and two cars went to lucky guests that evening.
Senator Manny usually celebrates in his hometown, General Santos, but this year he hosted a birthday party in Manila featuring many political guests and ambassadors. Good friends Franklin and Jo Lim enjoyed live music by Side A and many more.
I conclude my column with the first birthday party of Amos Garcia Arce, the cute son of Mitch Garcia and Ariel Arce. Marriott Philippines’ hardworking cluster director of marketing communications, Mitch made sure all the party details were beautifully done and all the guests had lots to eat!
Designed by event maestro Teddy Manuel, the ceiling was adorned with balloons and light installations. For the theme “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star,” Teddy flanked the ballroom’s entryway with cutout stars and fairy lights that seemed to float like stardust by the doorway, as if inviting guests into the night sky. Mirrored tables were adorned with glass candelabras and fresh blue Ecuadorian roses.
Happy birthday to everyone born in December, especially to our Lord Jesus! He is the reason for the season. For those still looking for last-minute birthday gifts and Christmas presents, head to SMX Convention Center for Noel Bazaar 2019 that ends today. Bazaar hours are from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
The SMX Convention Center ribbon-cutting and opening ceremonies were attended by Dr. Alan Ortiz, May Rodriguez and Solomon Yuyitung of Bantayog ng mga Bayani Foundation, Donita Rose of GMA Network Center, Justine Bautista of Cut Unlimited Inc.,