Reyes is an officer and a gentleman

PNS — FRIENDS and colleagues of former Armed Forces of the Philippines chief Angelo T. Reyes were shocked by his tragic death yesterday.

“For many of us, he will remain an officer and a gentleman and we join his family in bereavement,” former Philippine National Police chief retired General Arturo C. Lomibao said.

Reyes was the head of the Armed Forces during the administration of ousted President Joseph Estrada.

His defection was considered as the major force behind Estrada’s ouster in 2001, which eventually put former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in power.

Under the Arroyo government, he became the Secretary of the Departments of National Defense, Interior and Local Government, and Energy.

Known as “Angie” to relatives, friends and media, Reyes was born on March 17, 1945 in San Miguel, Manila to Pablo S. Reyes of Binangonan, Rizal and Purificacion Tomas of Malate, Manila.

He graduated as valedictorian at the Cubao High School in 1960. He entered the PMA in 1962 and was among the top ten graduates of Class 1966.

He started his career in the AFP as an Army Special Forces’ team leader in Mindanao fighting Muslim insurgents and communist rebels.

To boost his career, the general took a Masters in Business Administration from the Asian Institute of Management in 1973 and Master of Public Administration from Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in 1991.

Reyes also took up International Defense Management Course in Monterey, California in 1983 and topped the Trust Operations Management Course at the Ateneo Business School in 1987 which earned him a scholarship to the Northwestern University in Chicago, Illinois.

He received numerous awards and decorations during his colorful career in the military and the government and is a known civic leader.