Marina Dizon Santiago
She was born on July 18, 1875, to Jose Dizon, one of the thirteen revolutionary martyrs of Cavite. She was also a cousin of Emilio Jacinto. She was eight months old when her mother died, leaving her in the care of her aunt, Josefa Dizon, Emilio Jacinto's mother. It was in this extended family that her sense of patriotism and nationalism was nurtured.
Marina Santiago obtained her early education in a private school conducted by Maestro Timoteo Reyes. Later, she enrolled in a public school under Doña Aniceta Cabrera, where her future husband Jose Turiao Santiago was also one of her classmates. She studied music, painting,and modelling and became an accomplished singer and declaimer. She was a guitarist and violinist of the Trozo Comparsa Band. She wanted to be a teacher but her father frowned on the idea.
One night in 1893, she was accompanied by Emilio Jacinto to the house of Don Restituto Javier. There in the presence of Gregoria de Jesus, the young wife of Bonifacio, Josefa and Trinidad Rizal and their nieces, Angelica Lopez and Delfina Herbosa, Marina was initiated into the Katipunan.
Marina was a very active member of the organization. She presided over initiation rites for women, kept the records, and acquainted new members on the constitution and teachings of the Katipunan. She always reminded the members to maintain a cheerful demeanor and not to show any signs of an impending rebellion.
In 1896, her father was executed, and her husband was arrested and imprisoned. To avoid having the records of the Katipunan fall into the hands of the authorities, she burned them. She sold her valuables to raise money, and used this money to bribe the guards to let her visit her husband in jail.
On September 11, 1897, her husband was temporarily released. The American occupation in 1899 forced Marina and her husband to transfer residence to Meycauayan, Bulacan. They moved to Tarlac when the hostilities ended. There she left Jose with Dr. Marcelino de los Santos and proceeded to Bamban. Jose slipped into Manila unnoticed and found work as an accountant. But he was suspected as a revolucionario and an order for his capture was issued by the Americans.
To avoid arrest Jose flew to Hongkong. Eventually, Marina and her husband were reconciled when he came back to the Philippines.
- "Jovita Varias-de Guzman". "Women of Distinction" (Biographical Essays on Outstanding Filipin Women of the Past and the Present). Philippines, Bukang Liwayway, 1967. (September 4, 2007).
- de Guzman,Jovita V.,Vicente A. Santiago,Remedios T. de Leon and Teresita E. Erestain. Women Of Distinction; Biographical Essays on Outstanding Filipino Women of the Past and the Present. Philippines: Bukang Liwayway, 1967