Garitony Tonypet Nicolas, more popularly known in the Filipino martial arts (FMA) community as “ Punong Lakan” passed away last Sunday at the age of 48 because of lingering illness. He left behind his daughters Machil, Mizha and Michaela, his grandchildren Chico and Tantan, his twin brother Gary and younger brother John-John. His remains lie in state for viewing at Malaya Funeraria in Arnais Street, Pasay City. A funeral service to be conducted by Pastor Rodolfo Jr Bautista followed by a tribute program will be held at the Malaya Funeraria Chapel 4 on Friday at 6 p.m.
The Crematory Rites will be on Sunday, 1 p.m. at the La Funeraria Paz Crematory, 143 G. Araneta Avenue Barangay Tatalon corner Kaliraya Street, Quezon City.
Nicolas was the founder of Modern Arnis Mano-Mano Filipino Martial Arts organization and the executive director of the Philippine Martial Arts Hall of Fame (PhilMaHoF). Nicolas established the PhilMaHoF in 2012 to give recognitions to exemplary teachers and practitioners of FMA in the Philippines and around the world.
Author of numerous books on arnis, Nicolas also earned the title of “Father of Modern Sinawali.” Sinawali is the arnis way of double stick fighting. He also developed the unique martial sport of pang-oran that combines arnis stick fighting and kickboxing. Nicolas was also active in movie fight choreography and has taught arnis to the constables of the Metro Manila Development Authority.