Senators hail Susan Roces a nat’l treasure; Poe dedicates Foundling law to mom

Published May 23, 2022, 1:30 PM

by Mario Casayuran

The life of Susan Roces is an inspiration to not only those who have been and are still part of the movie industry but also to all Filipinos whose lives she has touched – whether through her deeds or movies she has starred in.

Susan Roces, a movie icon, a true Filipina, and a national treasure, passed away on May 20, 2022, at the age of 80.

This summed up the resolution of Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III expressing the ‘’profound sympathy and sincere condolences of the Senate of the Philippines on the death of Jesusa Purificacion Levy Sonora-Poe, popularly known as “Susan Roces.”

The resolution stated that ‘’the passing away of a legendary movie star whose invaluable contribution to Philippine cinema is beyond compare and whose sincerity, warmth, guidance, and kindness had truly touched the hearts of her fellow workers in the film industry sector, particularly the young actors and actresses who have just began their movie careers, will be mourned by the Filipino people and the nation.’’ starred in.

‘’You will always be in our hearts and minds. May you rest well in the bosom of our Father,’’ it added.

Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph G. Recto, also in a separate resolution, expressed the nation’s grief over the demise of Susan Roces.

The nation, according to Recto, ‘’fell in love with her at first sight never lost their affection, as intensely as she was their Crush ng Bayan in her teens as their Pambansang Lola in her Seventies.

‘’Paalam po at pagpugay, Ginang Jesusa Sonora Poe, ang matagal nagsilbing liwanag sa dilim (Goodbye Mrs. Jesusa Sonoro Poe who has served as s guiding light in darkness),’’ he added.

Senators Manuel ‘’Lito’’ Lapid and Ramon ‘’Bong’’ Revilla Jr., both movie actors, likewise expressed their condolences by also filing resolutions on the demise of Susan Roces.

The Sotto resolution stated that. after making her acting debut in 1952 at the age of 11 in the movie “Mga Bituin ng Kinabukasan,” Susan Roces had since starred in more than 130 movies in a career that spanned 70 years, for which she was regarded as the “Queen of Philippine Movies” and the foremost leading lady of local cinema.

‘’Whereas, in 1968, she married Ronald Allan Kelley Poe, better known as “Fernando Poe Jr.” and the “King of Philippine Movies,” and they became one of the acknowledged power couples in the entertainment industry as they both produced movies under their own production outfits, Rosas Productions and FPJ Productions,’’ it stated.

‘’Whereas, as head of their movie production companies, she and her husband exhibited sincere concern over the plight of the workforce in the movie industry, breaking the long-time tradition of unequal treatment of stars and ordinary workers and implementing equal opportunity system among the cast and crew, thus earning the respect and admiration of the people they had worked with,’’ it stressed.

‘’Whereas, as a loving wife and mother, she wholeheartedly supported the political endeavor of her husband, who unfortunately died on December 14, 2004, and her (adoptive) daughter, who has now become a respectable legislator (Senator Grace Poe) and one of the leading lawmakers of the country,’’ it added.

In so far as Recto is concerned, ‘’all the love and kindness she had shown in 80 fully lived years, none is perhaps greater than her decision to become a mother.’’

‘’It has been said that there is an instinct in a woman to love most her own child — but Susan Roces had a greater instinct to make any child who needs her love, her own,’’ he pointed out.

‘’Senator Grace once poignantly said, “I firmly believe that adopting one child may not change the world, but it will certainly change the world for that child,’’ Recto, grandson of nationalist Senator Claro M. Recto, said.

‘’No, Grace, let me amend your statement. Your mom’s courageous and compassionate act 54 summers ago did change our world, because that child continues to make our world better,’’ he added.

The lady lawmaker thanked her colleagues in the Senate for their messages of sympathy and tributes for her mother, Susan Roces.

Poe, who physically attended Monday’s plenary session despite mourning Roces’ death, said her mother would always encourage her “no matter what, to finish what I started.”

She also dedicated the recent signing of the Republic Act 11767, or the Foundling Recognition and Protection Act, to her adoptive mother.

“Parati niyang sinasabi, ‘Hindi ka man nanggaling sa aking sinapupupnan, nanggaling ka naman sa puso ko’ (She would always tell me, ‘You may not be born from my womb, but you came from my heart),” Poe recalled.