(born 1926) is a Filipino
journalist whose writing career has spanned six decades. He is perhaps best known as the lone survivor of the 1957 plane crash
that killed the President of the Philippines Ramon Magsaysay
and 24 others.
Mata was a reporter with the Philippine Herald
newspaper. He covered the Korean War
as a war correspondent
. In 1953, he was assigned by his newspaper to cover the newly-elected President Magsaysay.
Beginning in the 1980s, Mata penned a regular newspaper column
for the Manila Standard
. As of 2008, he writes for the Malaya
Plane crash survivor
On March 16, 1957, President Magsaysay, accompanied by several government officials and journalists, flew to Cebu
for a speaking engagement. Later that evening, the presidential party took off for the return flight to Manila
. Their plane crashed in Mount Manung-gal in Cebu at around 1:16 a.m, March 17, 1957.
Mata had been seated near the presidential compartmentI found myself on the side of a steep cliff among dried bushes…. Agonizing with pain, I was completely at a loss what to do. About three meters away from me were parts of the plane. They were still burning. Meanwhile, I heard the distant... Read More