Benito "Ben" Legarda
Benito Legarda IV y Roces was a chemist, lawyer and businessman. His parents were Benito "Bitong" (Benito Legarda III) and Filomena Roces (Doña Menang). He was affectionally known as Ben. His siblings were Rosario "Bombona" Legarda, Dr. Alejandro "Mandu" Legarda, Teresa "Titic" Legarda, Filomena "Menang" Legarda, Beatriz "Botones" Legarda and Jose "Pepito" Legarda.
Benito Legarda IV or Ben was born on October 26, 1898. He was one of the first graduates in chemistry and chemical engineering at the University of the Philippines. In 1921, at the age of 23 he left for Paris to pursue piano studies with Lucien Wurmser, together with his sister Rosario. He would remain a life-long lover of classical music, being a supporter of the Manila Symphony Society.
Benito Legarda IV's grandparents were Benito Legarda y Tuason, (Benito Legarda II) and Teresa de la Paz, widow of Jose Severo Tuason, fourth lord of the Tuason Mayorazgo.
He married the famous Carnival Queen Trinidad Fernandez on 24 January 1925 at Quiapo Church. They were the parents of Benito Legarda Jr. (born 6 August 1926) and married to Angelita Ganzon; Filomena or Fatotay born 1928 and died shortly before her 3rd birthday; and Carmen Milagros (born 1932), also known as Carmita d. 1986.
Ben Legarda also pursued law studies, like his father, becoming a lawyer after he graduated from the University of Santo Tomas. He also actively managed the family's real estate business and ventured into manufacturing of wine from imported raisins, at the La Rosario Distillery.
He pursued many civic interests, becoming a supporter and long-time president of the Philippine Motor Association, a member of the Garden Club of the Philippines, the Philippine Orchid Society, president of the Rotary Club of Manila and later governor of his Rotary District 81.
He joined the Philippine Army reserve early in the Commonwealth period and was called to active duty shortly before the outbreak of World War II. He rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel. After the war, he revived the family's interest in the Roces chain of publications (Tribune-Vanguardia-Taliba), which the Americans suspected of collaboration. Because of this Benito Legarda IV reorganized the chain under a new company named Manila Times. The newspaper became a victim of Martial Law on 21 September 1972. Less than a year later, Benito Legarda IV or Ben died, his failing health aggravated by the oppression of martial law, on 7 July 1973.
A succession of Benito Legardas:
- Benito Legarda y Lerma I, founding patriarch
- Benito Legarda II y Tuason, Director of Finance in Aguinaldo's Revolutionary Government, Vice-President of the Malolos Congress that drafted the first democratic constitution in Asia, member of the Philippine Commission, Philippine resident commissioner in Washington with a voice but no vote in the U.S. lower house, husband of Teresa de la Paz, viuda de Jose Severo Tuason
- Benito "Bitong" Legarda, Jr. III, chemist and businessman
- Benito "Ben" Legarda IV, chemist, lawyer, vice-chairman of the pre-martial law Manila Times, businessman, President Manila Rotary Club, District Governor of Rotary District 81, war veteran; patriot
- Benito Legarda Jr. V y Fernandez, eminent economist and historian, founding member, Philippine Statistical Association; founding member & past president, Philippine Economic Society; past president, Harvard Club of the Philippines; founding editor, Philippine Economic Journal (now merged with Philippine Review of Economics), co-founder with Dr. Angelita G. Legarda, Central Bank Money Museum and Barrilla (museum publication).
- Benito L. Legarda VI y Lobregat
- Benito Legarda VII e Yrezabal
- History of Legarda Family by Benito Legarda y Fernandez Accessed 2 September 2009
- Roces Family Tree Accessed 2 September 2009
Benito "Ben" Legarda was born on October 26, 1898 to Benito "Bitong" Legarda, Jr. and Filomena "Nena" Roces. He was married to Trinidad Fernandez and had three children namely: Benito F. Legarda, Filomena F. Legarda, and Carmen Legarda. He died on July 7, 1973.