One of the beautiful attractions in Luneta Park is the statues of the national heroes. Did you know that one of those is Gen. Vicente Alvarez? Who is Gen. Vicente Alvarez?
Gen. Vicente Alvarez is first and foremost a Zamboangueño, born on April 5, 1862 to Alejo Alvarez and Isidora Solis. He took his elementary education at Liceo de Zamboanga, went to Ateneo de Manila, and then later, to a Spanish Military School.
While in Manila, Vicente Alvarez saw the brutalities of the Spaniards to fellow Filipinos. He felt deep compassion towards his countrymen that later led him to join the revolution. He was still working under the Spanish regime while he collaborated with the revolutionist. He was suspected of conniving with the resistance, so he was given a mission in Sulu. Soon after, when he went back to Zamboanga, he started to gather people, Christians and Muslims, for revolt.
On May 14, 1899, Gen. Vicente Alvarez received the rank General of the Philippine Revolutionary Forces from the Revolutionary Headquarters in Malolos, Bulacan. General Alvarez and the revolutionary forces fought the Spaniards in Zamboanga and victoriously won the battle on May 18, 1899.
General Alvarez’s heroism led to the city’s independence of foreign rule for a period of six (6) months (revolutionary period) before the American forces took over. His deep love and compassion, not only to the Zamboangueños but also to his countrymen, earned him great honor and respect.
Today, we celebrate General Vicente Alvarez’s heroism and great courage who fought for our liberty from the oppressors.