Striking up the band for freedom
IN ITS own small way, Philab Industries participated in the historic Edsa Revolution in 1986. On February 24 of that year, when Ferdinand Marcos imposed a curfew and threatened to launch a full-scale attack, Philab president, Hector C. Navasero, brought along his wife, Babs, and the 35-man Philab Brass Band to assist in the human barricade forming around Camp Crame.
To the tune of “Onward Christian Soldiers,” the barricades chanted, “Cory! Cory!” as the band marched along. “Tie A Yellow Ribbon” made people sing and boogie on the crowded roads.
But, when “Bayan Ko” and “Lupang Hinirang” were played, the noisy crowd simmered down, and sang the lyrics with fervor.
Kuya Hector was like the Pied Pier of Hamlin leading his marching band as they drew a crowd that grew progressively bigger.
That evening, the band members slept on the sidewalk. When the first rays of the sun woke them up, they began the day with a rousing rendition of the Pambansang Awit. By 9 a.m., they stationed themselves in front of Club Filipino. As new president Corazon Aquino, Fidel Ramos and Juan Ponce Enrile arrived, Kuya Hector led his band to welcome them!
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