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Benigno Aquino, Jr.
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    (November 27, 1932-August 21, 1983)
    Born in Concepcion, Philippines
    Correspondent for the Manilla Times
    Mayor of Concepcion (1955-59)
    Governor of Tarlac province (1959-61)
    Philippine Senator (1967-72)
    Imprisoned on charges of murder, illegal possession of firearms and subversion (1972-80)
    Founded the People's Power political party (1978)
    Exiled to the US to undergo coronary bypass surgery (1980)
    Assassinated at Manilla International Airport while returning from exile
    Husband of Corazon Aquino
    His father was suspected of collaborating with the Japanese during World War II.
    He dropped out of two colleges, later explaining he had decided to go to as many schools as possible to make as many new friends as possible.
    He dated Imelda Romualdez before she married Ferdinand Marcos.
    Before leaving for America, he agreed not to return to the Philippines and not to speak out against the Marcos regime; almost immediately after his operation, he renounced both promises.
    Although the security guards directly responsible for his assassination were eventually imprisoned, the higher-ups who ordered his death were never punished.
    The airport where he was murdered was renamed in his honor.
    At 17, he was the youngest correspondent covering the Korean War.
    At 22, he negotiated the surrender of Luis Taruc, the main leader of the Huk rebellion (1954).
    He lost 60 pounds on a hunger strike to protest his imprisonment on trumped-up charges.
    After breaking his agreement by speaking out against the Marcos regime while in exile, he commented 'A pact with the devil is no pact at all.'
    Shortly before his return he said, 'If it's my fate to die by an assassin's bullet, so be it. But I cannot be petrified by inaction or fear of assassination.'
    His murder united the opposition to the Marcos regime, leading to the dictatorship's fall three year later.

Credit: C. Fishel

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