FVR’s state funeral first in two decades for PH president

The last time the Philippines held a state funeral for a former president was in 1997 for the late Diosdado Macapagal. The family of the late former presidents Corazon Aquino and Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III declined Malacañang’s offer to give each of them a state funeral in 2009 and 2021, respectively.

Former first lady Amelita Ramos spends a few moments in front of the urn of former president Fidel Ramos at the Heritage Chapel in Taguig City. (Photo courtesy of RPDEV)

On Tuesday, Aug. 9, the country will witness a state funeral for former president Fidel V. Ramos, who died at the age of 94 on July 31.

The program for the former President's state funeral will begin at 10 a.m. in Taguig City.

A private mass will first be held at the Heritage Chapel, followed by the departure for the Libingan ng mga Bayani with full military honors.

After a procession, the casket bearing the remains of the former president will enter the Heroes Memorial Gate. This will be followed by full military honors before the casket is loaded into a caisson.

READ: Ramos family grateful for gov’t support in FVR wake, state burial

Pallbearers and Ramos’ grandchildren will be directly behind the caisson as the funeral procession proceeds to the grave site with flower drops along the way.

Ramos remains will be accorded a burial ceremony before being interred at “Section A Presidents of the Republic of the Philippines” between former presidents Ferdinand Marcos Sr. and Elpidio Quirino.

Burial site for the cremated remains of former president Fidel Ramos (RPDEV photo)

The burial ceremony for the late President who was a decorated soldier and the country’s only career military officer with the rank of a five-star general will be composed of a 21-gun salute, turnover of the Philippine flag to the Ramos family, lowering of the urn, playing of Ramos’ favorite song, and flower offering.

Supporters, former government officials, and progressive groups have been flocking to the wake for the past week.

READ: Ramos family opens FVR wake to public; supporters flock

Former lawmakers Satur Ocampo and Liza Maza and ACT Teachers Partylist Rep. France Castro also paid their last respects to the former president.

Despite being from the military, Castro said that Ramos was the only president who was open to everyone.

“Every time sa (in) public na magkikita kami gusto niya kunan kami ng litrato. Siya ay (naka-thumbs up) at ako ay (nakataas ang kamao), magkatabi kami (he liked for us to take a picture. He would give a thumbs up and I raise my fist, we’re right next to each other),” Ocampo told GMA News.

For her part, Maza said they appreciate Ramos’ sincerity to achieve peace in the country.

Hairstylist Ricky Reyes shared that the former president was like a father figure to him.

“There was a point in time when he was offering me to adopt me already as a Ramos. But I said no. I think for me friendship is the most important,” he said.