Former Philippine Red Cross chairman Mario Nery, 84

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FORMER Philippine Red Cross (PRC) chairman Mario Nery died early Tuesday after suffering a cardiac arrest.

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He was 84 years old.

His remains lie in state at Mount Carmel Church, Broadway Avenue, New Manila in Quezon City.

Until his death, Nery has been a member of the PRC Board of Governors since 1990 and served as PRC chairman from 1996 to 1997.

“My deepest condolences to the family of Governor Mario Nery. He was a good personal friend. I call him Yoda because he is a man of vision who initiated a lot of good things for the Philippine Red Cross during his term as chairman,” PRC chairman and Sen. Richard Gordon said.

Neri earned several awards from the organization including the Diploma of Service, Aurora Aragon Quezon Medal, Testimonial Plaque, Silver Humanitarian Service Cross and the Gold Humanitarian Service Cross.

He was elected as vice president of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and Governing Board Member of the IFRC from 1998 to 2001. He was the first and only Filipino elected to the vice presidency of the IFRC.

Aside from the Philippine Red Cross, Nery served the poor through Rotary International, involving himself in cooperatives, securing low-cost housing, livelihood projects and micro-lending.

Nery retired as senior vice president of San Miguel Corp. after 39 years of service and he was hired again as SMC management consultant for five more years.

He completed graduate studies and management courses in local and foreign management schools including Ateneo de Manila University, Asian Institute of Management, International Management Institute in Switzerland and the Wharton School in the University of Pennsylvania.

Nery is survived by his wife Isidra Salcedo Nery and their six children and 16 grandchildren.

He will be cremated on July 16, after Mass at 8 a.m.

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