Licerio Geronimo

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Licerio Geronimo (b. August 27, 1855 - b. January 16, 1924) was a general of the Philippine Revolutionary Forces under Emilio Aguinaldo. He fought Major General Henry Ware Lawton at the Battle of Paye on December 19, 1899, where Lawton lost his life along with 13 other Americans.

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Early Life

Geronimo was a native of Sampaloc, Manila, his family moved to Montalban, Rizal. Where he helped his widowed mother sell firewood, rattan and forest products to support their living. He was also a fine marksmen and a good hunter in his early years. Due to poverty he was not able to have a formal education, but he managed to learn how to read and write by himself. He also liked reading poems and love acting. His grandfather introduced him to Andres Bonifacio whom he was influenced by his virtues and beliefs.

Katipunero

Geronimo became a member of the Katipunan and was appointed head of the council in Wawa, Montalban, recruited new members in San Mateo, and Marikina, Rizal. Gathered enough soldiers, he was part of the revolutionaries who attacked the San Juan del Monte. In 1897, he and his troops participated in the Battle of Purog and won over the enemies. After the death of Andres Bonifacio, he was designated as the Division General in charge of Rizal Province. He was promoted to major general by Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo after his victory in San Rafael, Bulacan. He was also responsible in defending Mt. Puray and Biak-na-Bato, where the needed supplies were to be secured. Gen. Antonio Luna, appointed him as the commander in the third zone, which includes Manila and Rizal.

American War

Geronimo and his men were engaged in the Battle of San Mateo, where he assiged "hit-men" which resuted to the death of Gen. Henry Lawton and other American officials in the battle. His claim to fame as the general who brought down Henry Ware Lawton is considered ironic, as Lawton had been previously credited with the capture of Gernimo. Near the end of the first phase of the Spanish-American war, Licerio Geronimo surrendered to US forces and took his oath of allegiance to the United States. Later worked for the United States and joined the Philippine Constabulary as an inspector, successfully bringing in bandits and former soldiers roaming the countryside. He was also part of the search party that brought down General Luciano San Miguel and his followers, resulting in the death of San Miguel.

He is commemorated in the name of Geronimo Barangay and General Licerio Geronimo Memorial National High School in Rodriguez, Rizal, as well as a street in his hometown of Sampaloc, Manila.


Reference

Citation

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