As the moon added a romantic sheen to the balmy breeze that wafted through the partially open vents of Colonial Inn, a booming voice breaks in, “ Honored and Distinguished Guests, Brothers, Sisters, Ladies and Gentlemen! We are gathered tonight to celebrate, honor and give tribute to our beloved Ladies! They make our lives complete and worth living. And behind every man’s success, stands a woman telling him what to do!” Declared the emcee of the evening, VW Mon Cruz. As everyone stood at attention, Bro. Nelson Reyes led the singing of the Star-Spangled Banner and Bayang Magiliw, followed by an invocation given by RW Joel V. Pal, Grand Chaplain. The welcome remarks was delivered by WB Levy Lavarino, chair of the Ladies Night Committee, and gave special compliments to the Ladies and their beaus, the dignitaries and brothers and sisters from other Lodges.
As token of their love and devotion, the brethren offered long-stemmed red roses to their ladies, led by WM Jun Almiron, as they waltzed to “Ikaw” a Filipino love song sang by Bro. Nelson Reyes. Reciprocating the collective show of affection, Sis. Thelma Talusan, wife of RW Dick Talusan, PDDGM, representing the Ladies echoed the same affection and called on the sisters to continue their support for the Lodge.
After a well-received introduction by RW Carlito Gallardo, Grand Director of Ceremonies of the Grand Lodge of the State of New York the guest speaker and past DDGM of the 4th Manhattan District, RW Ver Quijano, delivered a heart-warming inspirational speech that had virtually everyone’s eyes welling with tears, as he gave tribute to “the one lady” who exemplified what true love really is. She was his mother, whose pains, struggles and sacrificial love nurtured him and made him the man he is today. He went on to remind the Brethren, “ never ever forget to give thanks to the Ladies upon whom we depend so much for our lives, successes and happiness.”
As part of the celebration, former First Ladies pinned specially designed lapel pins to their husband’s dedication and leadership Calling on the former first Ladies was Sis. Jean Almiron assisted by SW Bro. Ignacio Abe.
In his closing remarks, WM Jun Almiron expressed his gratitude for the love and tremendous support everyone gave, including the Brethren and Worshipful Masters from other Lodges and the generosity of donors who, despite their inability to attend contributed to the success of the affair.
The Ladies Night Committee consisted of WB Levy Lavarino, VW Mon Cruz, and Bro. Henry Garcia, Bro. Ige Abe, Bro. Albert Inguito, Bro. Pepe Aquino, RW Carlito Gallardo and their beloved Ladies. Gratitude and appreciation were also extended to the DJGing & hubby and the staff of the Colonial Inn of Norwood, New Jersey.