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A cop named Hansel fulfills late mom’s dream

July 1, 2023 Alfred P. Dalizon 322 views

Alfred DalizonCRIMINALS and other lawbreakers fear him. Families of armed suspects killed in police operations he has led in the past hate and despise him.

But this tough cop is proven a ‘Mama’s Boy’ with a soft heart for the poor and all mothers and students in the country.

I’m talking about Colonel Hansel Marantan, the chief of the National Capital Region Field Unit of the PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group. On Thursday, he finally fulfilled the wish of his late mother — a public elementary school gymnasium.

Without asking for any government fund, the member of PNP Academy ‘Kabalikat’ Class of 1998 started last year a herculean task to build the Pimpila Elementary School gymnasium in Pamplona, Cagayan.

Being the president of the Pimpila Elementary School Alumni Association, the official solicited the support of his PNP family, the Parent-Teacher Association and other generous stakeholders and friends to build the gym.

On Thursday, Hansel was smiling as hundreds of Pimpila kinder and elementary school students, their parents and teachers and local police and government officials witnessed the inauguration of their ‘labor of love,’—a sprawling Pimpila multi-purpose gymnasium.

It was really a dream come true for all products and present students and teachers of the Pimpila school. In behalf of PNP chief, General Benjie Acorda, Police Regional Office 2 director, Brigadier Gen. Percy Rumbaoa led the blessing and inauguration of the school gym in Pamplona, a 4th-class municipality in Cagayan province.

Col. Marantan’s noble act has bee applauded by Cagayan Valley local government and police officials and residents, lawmakers, Gen. Acorda and Vice President and Department of Education Secretary Sara Duterte.

Bagong Henerasyon party-list Representative Bernadette Herrera and husband, Magsasaka party-list Rep. Robert Nazal Jr. lauded Marantan for the ‘very noble undertaking’.

“I remember when we talked and you told us your plan, yung gusto mong gawin, nakakalula yung project. Kadalasan yung mga projects ginagawa ng ibang tao from government funds, but you did it on your own using private funds which came from friends. You did it because you wanted it as a tribute for your mom who worked as teacher and eventually, principal of the school,” said the Magsasaka party-list representative.

Rep. Herrera said Marantan did the job as a tribute for his late mother and out of love for the Pimpila students and the future generations. She said the feat will really serve as an inspiration to them and others.

Senators Francis Tolentino and Robin Padilla likewise praised Marantan for his act. “Salamat at natupad mo din ang pangarap ng iyong ina bilang guro and later principal. It was a dream fulfilled.

Dapat tularan ka ng iba pang mga public servants,” said Sen. Tolentino.

Also a known Mama’s Boy,’ Sen. Padilla said the CIDG-NCR chief’s feat is worth emulating by the rest of the police force and other public servants. “Isa kang tunay na ehemplo ng kapulisan. In the name of your mother, you built a gym, patunay na ang isang pulis ay tunay na makadiyos, makabayan at may makataong gawain para sa ikagaganda ng kinabukasan ng mga kabataan,” the topnotcher of the 2022 senatorial race said.

VP Duterte expressed her ‘warmest greetings and heartfelt congratulations to the school administration, teachers, personnel, parents and all the community leaders who supported Pimpila Elementary School this school year.’

“The Annual Elementary Day and inauguration of the newly built school gymnasium are indeed momentous occasions, the evidence of our everlasting belief in the value of education and physical health. Let us express our sincere gratitude to everyone who helped make this facility possible, especially the Parents Teachers and Community Association. May we honor the numerous hours of hard work and cooperation they put in to achieve this goal,” she said.

The VP and DepEd chief also said the ‘brand-new Pimpila gym is a realization of a dream and an investment in the future. In this facility, we will develop our children’s physical fitness, teamwork, and impart virtues like perseverance, sportsmanship and discipline.

“Beyond being a place for sports and physical activity, it will give our students a chance to grow as leaders, improve their character, and make friends for life. In this gym, they will experience winning and losing, offering priceless lessons about resilience, perseverance and the importance of never giving up,” she added.

Other officials who congratulated Col. Marantan for his feat were Cagayan Vice Governor Melvin Vargas Jr., Cagayan School Division Superintendent Reynante Caliguiran and fellow Lakans, Colonels Julius Suriben, Lambert Suerte, Jeff Cariaga and Rod Samson.

Col. Marantan told me it has been their long-cherished dream to have a multi-purpose gymnasium that will provide a better place for their school and community activities. I told him we may never know but the gym may also produce future athletes and basketball players just like us.

“Last year, we dreamt of having a gym for our children but because government resources are never enough, it means we have to improvise, therefore we have to solicit. The wish became a plan and the plan became a reality, so we are here today,” he said.

Marantan described the building of the Pimpila gym as a ‘collective effort pioneered by the PNP with the support of the Alumni Association, their PTA, the local government unit and of course, the comm.

“Ang sabi nga ni PNP chief, General Benjamin C. Acorda Jr., ito ay bunga ng Serbisyong Nagkakaisa. It’s a combination of wit and luck, the prayers of the teachers and parents and the community.

And in the end, we made it. Sabi nga sa Maynila, yes, the Cagayanos can,” the official added.

Col. Marantan, in behalf of the school’s alumni association, expressed his heartfelt thanks to those who helped build the Pimpila gym. “I can’t mention your names one by one because you are too many. Sana nga lang sa mga nag-donate, makita ninyo ang saya ng mga bata at mga magulang nila. You brought joy to us and to them, and we can say, you just bought your ticket to heaven,” he said.

The official, a veteran of so-many court battles, said the project is also a ‘mother’s dream’ come true. He referred to his late mother, everyone’s mother in Pimpila, Mrs. Milagros Araneta Matamis Marantan who really dreamt of building a gymnasium for their school. “She’s in heaven now very happy about us,” he said.

Hansel’s father Olympio acted as the construction foreman during the building of the gym while the project engineer was his brother Joel, an engineer by profession. A grateful Pimpila school principal Desy Decano and teacher Joan Tagoc acknowledged the effort of Marantan and company when they accepted the newly-built gym.

Col. Marantan also took the occasion to tell the Pimpila students to help in taking care for their new gymnasium. “Mga bata, ang gym na ito ay isang regalo para sa inyo. Ito ay bunga ng pawis at sakripisyo ng marami. Alagaan ninyo ito at huwag sirain para magamit pa ng mga susunod na henerasyon,” he said.

“Suklian niyo rin ito sa pamamagitan ng pag-aaral ng mabuti, pagiging masunurin sa magulang at pagiging inspirasyon sa lahat. Please make your Inang and Tatang proud of you. At ang importante sa lahat, maging batang makabayan,” he added.

Last but not the least, he exhorted the young students to ensure that they will protect the newly-built gym. “Huwag ninyong sisirain ang gym. Madami ang napagod at nagsakripisyo dito. Magagalit si Chief PNP at hindi niyo magugustuhan ‘pag nasira dahil hahanapin namin kayo,” he joked.

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