Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Untold Childhood Story of Pacman's Mom: Dionisia Dapidran-Pacquiao was born in Inopacan

by Edgie Polistico
This could be the only post where you can read the life story (semi-biography) of Dionisia Mejia Dipidran-Pacquiao. I wonder why until now Wikipedia and Wiki-Filipinas have no entry about her. I have hint the story in this blog will help answer that question.

Photo credit to:
DIONISIA DECLARO DAPIDRAN (or DAPIGRAN) IS INOPACNON BUT HAS FORGOTTEN HER ROOTS. I first learned that Dionisia Dapidran-Pacquiao is from Inopacan when I met my cousin who happened to be in our hometown last year to attend the town fiesta. Yes, I’m talking about Mommy Diony, the mother of multi-titlist boxing champion - Manny Pacquiao (a.k.a. Pacman). The topic about Dionisia as an Inopacnon was brought up while we were having an account over the story on how the old folks in our clan used to own the entire vast of land of what is now the town proper of Inopacan. Well, it was a sad story talking about the misfortune of our old folks and of a prodigal son. The land that was once owned by a Polistico family was disposed of to finance the costly penchant of a sabongero.

I verified with our relatives in town the information about Dionisia Dapidran and confirmed from a reliable source that Mommy Dionisia indeed came from Inopacan. Yes, she is an Inopacnon! She and her parents used to reside in Brgy. Esperanza, a barrio along the northern coast of Inopacan. She was born on May 13, 1949. But she declared in her application for late registration of her birth that she was born on May 15 that coincides with the Inopacan Town Fiesta.

Photo credit to:
She then threw a remarkable big party in GenSan and dressed like a debutante on her 60th birthday - with full media coverage.

Dionisia D. Paquiao's Live Birth Certificate

The record was checked and found her Certificate of Live Birth under Registry No. 2008-205 of the Civil Registrar's Office in Inopacan, Leyte. The registry document bears her name and signature as the Informant to this record.

Dionisia's father was Florencio Declaro Dapidran (alias Glo), a farmer from Baybay, Leyte, the town in the northern coastline next to Inopacan. Her mother, Cristina Ocba Mejia, is a plain housewife who is closely related to our clan. Dionisia's parents got married in Inopacan on May 8, 1943. They are Filipinos and belong to the Roman Catholic Church. Dionisia is the 3rd child of Cristina and Florencio who were 28 and 32 years old then, respectively. Cristina, now very old and wearing all-white hair, is living in Gen. Santos City with Dionisia.

The record of Dionisia D. Paquiao from the Office of the Civil Registrar

There is an issue to the real family name of Dionisia's father on whether it is DAPIDRAN or DAPIGRAN. But data found in the computer system of the Municipal Civil Registrar's office in Inopacan shows that what is recorded in the registry is Dapidran, not Dapigran. Dionisia also used Dapidran as her family name when she accomplished the application for the Late Registration of her Certifcate of Live Birth that was received by the Municipal Civil Registrar on April 23, 2008.

It was recalled that Dionisia and her parents disappeared one day in Bo. Esperanza when she was a 9-year old girl. It was told that they disappeared after her father allegedly stabbed to death Jose Polistico, the younger brother of Kulo Polistico. Afraid of Kulo's reprisal, who was then known as the tough guy in their village, the Dapidran’s escaped hurriedly to Dadiangas (now Gen. Santos City) and hid there over those long years to avoid the rage of Kulo and to evade arrest from the authorities. It was told that the motive of killing Jose Polistico was due to lost of temper over an old grudge and for harboring ill feelings against their relatives in the village who downgraded them being that they were very poor. Florencio, who according to some, was actually a meek person who eventually ran out of patience over unfavorable treatments and insults that he and his family had from the people around them. Thus, it was the last straw when Florencio and Jose Polistico engage in a heated argument. Florencio drew a knife and stabbed Jose to death. People in Inopacan are now wondering if Dionisia is also harboring the same feelings or guilt to the point of forgetting her roots in Inopacan.

After many years of hiding in Mindanao, Florencio, who was already old and sickly, went back to Baybay, Leyte and lived there shortly with his relatives. Eventually, he died in Baybay due to sickness.

I tried tracing the court records of the alleged murder case involving Dionisia’s father against a member of our clan. However, no such record was found. It was gathered later in our verification that the case was not actually brought to court because the suspect remained at large. It was necessary to bring the person of the suspect to court for the case of murder to prosper. But since Dionisia's father went into hiding, evaded arrest, and was not found, no criminal case had ever reached the court against him. No court case means no court record. Meanwhile, the police record is no longer in the municipal archive. It was thought that the records were destroyed presumably by the floods that deluged the Poblacion (town proper) many years ago. However, someone tipped off the information that Atty Hugo Kudera, a practicing lawyer in town, is the one who handled the case of murder against Florencio D. Dapidran.

Some said that when Dionisia’s father got old, he went back to Leyte and had an amicable settlement with the aggrieved family. Everything went into order and the case of murder was set aside and eventually forgotten.


I was also told that when Dionisia wanted to go to the US to attend the fight of her son, Manny Pacquiao, she obliged herself to go to the Civil Registrar's office in Inopacan to get her birth certificate. She did not stay long in the vicinity of the Municipal Hall and was not seen by many. She remained in the service car till they left the town probably to avoid from being identified and be mobbed by her supposed fans and kibitzers. Anyway, she was not in town to reintroduce herself as Inopacnon. She was in Inopacan merely to get her birth certificate that was required in processing her passport and visa.

However, informant from the Inopacan municipal office disclosed that Dionisia's application for late registration of her birth was done inter-office between the Civil Registrar's office in Gen. Santos City and the Civil Registrar's office in Inopacan, Leyte. Whatever and where ever she was when the paper was processed, what is certainly clear is that Dionisia was born in Inopacan, Leyte. She indeed is an Inopacnon.

In 2008, when we saw her on TV that she finally was in Nevada (with media frenzy featuring her arrival in Las Vegas for the Pacquiao-Dela Hoya fight), it was then the first time that she traveled to the US using her birth papers that was processed and issued in Inopacan.

Some said that Manny Pacquiao inherited from his grandfather the trait of being a fearless fighter who may has the tendency to kill an opponent - the killer instinct, though. At least for Manny the trait was not taken literally as what he had shown in his famed fights in the ring in 2008. We saw him extending his hands to help his opponent, the fallen and blooded David Diaz. Manny pulled the right arm of Diaz to help him rise from the canvass after knocking him out. He is a professional and kind fighter for me after all.

Some said that Dionisia has already renounced impliedly her being Inopacnon. I was told that “Wa na nĂ¢ moila og Inopacan. Wa na gani na sija mokuan sa ijang mga paryente dinhi moila. Taga-Esperansa man na sija. Mejia man ang inahan ana. Naa man nang igsoon (sa nanay) sa Esparanza.” (She does not recognize Inopacan anymore. She even forgot that she has relatives in Esperanza. She is from Esperanza. Her mother was of Mejia (clan) whose siblings are in Esperanza.) Some people noted that Dionisia even introduced herself as coming from Tacloban City or from Baybay, Leyte instead of Inopacan. However, we could not fully substantiate this information by now, until we have reviewed the video clips or voice clips of the interview. If this is true, we cannot blame her for not recognizing Inopacan as her place of origin for she spent most of her life away from Inopacan, unless she was really that ashamed or felt it too bad to admit that she is from Inopacan. Hence, we challenge Dionisia Paquiao and our clan members in Esperanza to comment on this. Of course, we need to hear the other side of the story.

Dionisia D. Paquiao's Voter Certification from the COMELEC

It is interesting to know that when she registered herself at the COMELEC office in Gen. Santos City on Dec. 13, 2000, she declared that her birth place is Inopacan, Leyte as shown by the COMELEC's VRR No. 530305002397 under Precinct No 0243-B of Purok Acharon, Brgy. Labangal, Gen. Santos City. She also used the name Dionisia Dapidran (not Dapigran) Paquiao.

When Dionisia said that when her son Manny got rich and famous many claimed to be their relatives, do not include us for sure. There is no need to claim it when the fact is that she is one of us. It could be she who simply forgot her roots, probably due to a traumatic reason or ill feelings in the past. This is written with no malice and hurt feelings over the loss of our clan member. This may conflict with my personal admiration to Manny Pacquiao. But for sure, I would still and continue to recognize him as one of us, in blood and as a son of an Inopacnon. I don't shy telling around that I’m very proud of him being one of the best in the world. I will also keep on telling that he is the son of an Inopacnon, even if his mother has already forgotten their roots, however true is that.

(Those who know better than my informants and me about the Pacquiao family as Inopacnon, come forward and share your story.)
                                                                                                                   - edgie polistico

Congressman Manny Pacquiao's calling card (contact numbers and email address).

Find and join us in Facebook

About Me

My photo

Author of Philippine Food, Cooking, and Dining Dictionary. A lexicographer since the age of 14.  Filipino Linguist. Blogger with 11 blog sites. Researcher of food culture, pop culture, places, structures, transportations, churches and whatever interest him about the Philippines. Visual artist. Photographer. Traveler who had been to all four corners of the Philippine archipelago, and still setting more footprints. 

SUBSCRIPTION BOX - Get a copy of my next posts by email.

HELP Edgie Polistico now

You helped fund my research.
More discoveries, information, and knowledge will be
shared to all because of your generosity.

Email your message to:

CLICK HERE for more on how to help this project