by Aileen P. Refuerzo
Another lady centenarian was honored by the city council, adding to the ranks of the city’s icons of longevity, lighthouses of wisdom and pillars of moral strength.
Aurelia Artemia Tamayo-Baltazar, 104 years old of Jasmin Street, Upper QM, was born in Sta. Rosa, Nueva Ecija, on Oct. 20, 1908 and made Baguio her home 20 years ago.
While no record of her birth can be obtained from the then Bureau of Census and Statistics as its records were destroyed during World War II, a copy of her certificate of baptism was issued by the parish of St. Nicholas of Tolentine, Diocese of Cabanatuan City bearing her record of date and place of birth.
The city council last Monday approved Resolution 132 s. 2013 honoring Baltazar.
She finished Grade 6 at the Muñoz Elementary School, Muñoz, Nueva Ecija. On Oct. 17, 1925 she married Diosdado Baltazar in Corregidor, Bataan. They moved to Urdaneta, Pangasinan, where they established residence, the resolution noted.
She was a full-time housewife and mother to 11 children whom she and her husband raised well. She was widowed in 1986 and since then was left to the care of her children.
Upon the invitation of one of her siblings, she moved to Baguio with her daughter about 20 years ago and up to the present, still continues to enjoy the cool and rejuvenating Baguio weather. She has embraced Baguio to her heart because of the place and people, factors which she credit for her longevity.
She observes a simple way of living, takes care of her children, family and friends, and everything about Baguio keeps her twilight years active, even as she suffers from physical disability.
Baltazar joined three other lady centenarians Leonor Oliva, 104, Magdalena Visperas, 103, and Virgilia Valdez who were honored during the Baguio Day celebration last year.
The resolution is in line with the thrust of the city government to recognize the participation of the elderly in the transformation of the city and its citizenry and to award recognition and honor as a gesture of respect to them.