By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
The founder of the Bacolod Real Estate Development Corporation (BREDCO) passed away last Saturday morning, July 10.
Atty. Simplicio Palanca, who turned 98 last March 12, passed away in a private hospital in Bacolod City where he was confined.
Former 3rd district congressman Alfredo “Albee” Benitez confirmed the death of his grand uncle in a statement posted on his Facebook page.
Palanca was described by Negrenses as the old man by the sea as a visionary who never faltered from his vision of reclaiming the 250-hectare shoreline of Bacolod and establishing the city’s main seaport.
Benitez said that even when others thought it was impossible, now it has changed the geographical and economic landscape of Bacolod City, and provided many jobs and opportunities for Bacolodnons and Negrenses.
He added that Palanca also continued his vision for the establishment of Magikland, an outdoor entertainment and amusement park in Silay City, even from his hospital bed.
Palanca began his dream of building a seaport in 1961 which now caters not just to inter-island vessels but as well as international cargoes.
Incumbent 3rd District Rep. Francisco Benitez and Albee’s younger brother, in a statement, said, “Our family lost this week two giants whose wisdom and generosity have been a constant source of inspiration and guidance.
They devoted their lives not only to enhancing the family’s legacy and protecting the integrity of their parents’ names – but their vision and strong sense of civic duty have changed the economic landscape of Bacolod and transformed the lives of so many Negrosanons. For these and many more, Lolo Sammy and Lolo Esto will be sorely missed.”
Palanca’s younger brother, Dr. Ernesto Palanca, died four days earlier on July 6.
The family has not issued an official statement or details on memorials./DGB, WDJ