A Great Man from Mariveles, Bataan: Ricardo "Ric" Catahan

Ricardo was born in Mariveles, Bataan, Philippines, on February 7, 1919. To begin with, he and Helen grew up together in the Mariveles-Corregidor area. When Ricardo got accepted to the Philippine Military Academy (PMA), he was the first student from his province to accomplish so. Before he could complete PMA and marry Helen as planned, World War II broke out. While in Bataan during World War II, Ricardo witnessed the surrender of the United States of America and the Philippines to the Japanese Army, which resulted in the notorious Bataan Death March. With Helen, he managed to find his way out of captivity throughout the war and marry her.

Ricardo Catalan at PMA Baguio City 1939

A bachelor's degree in accounting was Ricardo's goal after World War II, so he entered the University of the East. At Clark Airbase, he began working as a civilian for the United States Air Force after founding and serving as president of the Mariveles Junior Chamber of Commerce.

Ricardo founded Mariveles Jaycees

In 1967, Ricardo and his family came to the United States and settled in the Excelsior neighborhood of San Francisco. After 30 years of service in the US Air Force, he retired as a Certified Internal Auditor. Ricardo worked for the state of California for another ten years before retiring.

The SIA (Special Immigrants Association), a social club mostly comprised of former Clark Air Base employees, included Ricardo as a member and he served as its president. Also, he was a founder and former president of the Corregidorian USA Association, a nonprofit that promotes the history and legacy of the island fortress of Corregidor.

At the National Archives, Smithsonian, MacArthur Foundation, Fort Belvoir, and Historico Militar in Madrid, Ricardo spent a lot of time doing research on Corregidor and Mariveles for the sake of historical accuracy. History of Mariveles is currently available for public use at the Llamas Memorial Institute's library thanks to a book written by him based on his research.

Throughout his life, Ricardo made a beneficial impact on the lives of many people. He was a man of honor, honesty, and compassion throughout his entire life. He was a kind man who will be much missed.

Ricardo Catahan with his son Ricky Catahan in San Francisco, California USA

When Ricardo M. Catahan passed away in Las Vegas on September 9, 2016, his second wife Lourdes was by his side to comfort him. Ricardo's first wife, Helen, and his youngest son, Peter, died before him (who died during child birth). Among those mourning his passing are his oldest daughter Aurora, second daughter Emma, son Ricky, stepchildren Den, Sirjohn, and Bodie, as well as several grandchildren.