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Garchitorena-Goloy, poet, writer and journalist, 93

Gloria Garchitorena-Goloy, poet, short story writer and journalist, passed on December 28 at the age of 93.

 She is survived by daughters Angelina, Matilde, and Elizabeth; son-in-law Ric Cortez Jr.; grandchildren Giselle, Erica and Alfred Araullo, Fredric and Eunice, Carlo, Paolo, Luis, Nico; and great-grandchildren Bea, Samantha, Allison, Sofia, Ariela and Audrey. 

 A graduate of UST Faculty of Philosophy and Letters (Litt. B in Journalism), she was associate editor of the pre-martial law Sunday Times Magazine and supplements editor of The Manila Times. She later contributed articles to Express Sports Weekly, Sunburst Magazine, among other publications.   

 She also edited the Paco Parish Sentinel, the newsletter of the Parish of San Fernando de Dilao of Paco, during the stewardship of parish priest, Bishop Teodoro C. Bacani Jr. 

Goloy authored four books, Adams and Eves and Other Poems (1969), A Housewife in the World of Sports (1997), At the Crossroads (2007), and Two Voices (2013). Her poems are included in several anthologies, among them, Philippine Contemporary Literature (Maramba, 1978), Philippine Literature (De La Salle University Press, 1990-1995), A Native Clearing (Abad, 1993), Songs of Ourselves (Manlapaz, 1994).

Among the awards she received are: Golden Owl Award for excellence in poetry (UST Philets Foundation), Parangal Hagbong (UST Varsitarian Gawad Ustetika ), Certificate of Recognition in Journalism (UST Alumni Association, Inc.), Gawad Kalinangan Award (Rotary Club of Manila), Lifetime Achievement Award (Philippine Sportswriters Association), San Lorenzo Ruiz Award (San Fernando de Dilao Parish), Noblesse Oblige Service Award (Paco Catholic School), 

 She co-founded the Greater Manila Duckpin Bowling Association, Inc., subsequently the National Duckpin Bowling Association, Inc.

Goloy is more popularly remembered for chronicling the triumph of her namesake, Gloria Diaz, as the country’s first Miss Universe in 1969. Goloy was Diaz’s official journalist-chaperone.

 In 2012, Goloy fractured her right hip and underwent partial hip replacement surgery. Despite continuing physical therapy, she had since been in a wheelchair. 

She described her life then in a message to the Philippine PEN at the launch of Two Voices in 2013.

“I am like a soldier confined to barracks. Besides medical check-ups, I can count with the fingers of one hand my outings in the last year…Whenever I need to go somewhere, my daughters hire a van, with a pahinante, so I can be loaded on to the vehicle and then unloaded--in my wheelchair. On Sundays, a lay minister comes to the house to give me Holy Communion and to share readings from the Mass.

“This wheelchair, which I may have to put up with for the rest of my life, is constricting my lifestyle. However, it isn’t constricting my mental activities!  I’m still playing with words -- in solving puzzles, this time, and it is giving me a different kind of triumphant joy!

 “Working with puzzles is a lot like creating a poem, or a short story. It gives me a sense of one-upmanship. Puzzles certainly keep the mind in a creative mode, though the triumph is meagre compared with stringing words in a poem.

“Besides, putting up with this…er, puzzling situation, is a valiant way of telling our Lord, Thy will be done.”

Topics: Gloria Garchitorena-Goloy , poet , short story writer , journalist ,
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