Jesus V. Trinidad, one of Negros Oriental’s champions of press freedom and a respected public servant, has passed away at the age of 71.

Trinidad died on November 9 due to multiple organ failure at the Silliman University Medical Center in Dumaguete City.

Trinidad was station manager of DWYC and activist who fought for press freedom and human rights against the Marcos dictatorship which briefly put him behind bars.

He worked as a PANAMIN project officer for a decade, pushing for the welfare of national minorities in Iloilo, Mindoro and South Cotabato. He later joined the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan in Negros Oriental.

The people of Guihulngan City elected Trinidad as councilor for three consecutive terms. He later served as chair of Barangay Magsaysay for two consecutive terms.

Trinidad left behind his brothers Dr. Jose Cayo, Luis and Vicente and sister Alicia.

Likewise bereaved are his children by his first wife Sofia who died in 1988: Jessica (and husband Carlos Villarmente), Anthony (and wife Novie), Mating, Alvin (and wife Perla), former Inquirer reporter Andrea (and husband Dick Echavez) and Jat.

Also bereaved are Trinidadâ€s second wife, Nancy, and their children Jeman and Nancy Ann.

Trinidad’s body will lie in state at Barangay Magsaysay until Monday when it will be brought to the Trinidad family residence in Bateria, Guihulngan City.

On Nov. 17, the body will be brought to the Guihulngan City Hall and the local Catholic Church for negrological rites and a mass. Burial will be in the afternoon. (Tonyocruz.com)

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