Sunday, February 24, 2013

A Memorial to Ronilo “Nonoy” Magbanua (1963-2013) by James U. Sy Jr.

Ronilo “Nonoy” Magbanua, a resident of Brgy. Banago, passed away last February 13, 2012 in Bacolod City due to complications from tuberculosis. He was 49. His remains were laid to rest at the Bacolod City Public cemetery on February 23, 2013. Magbanua, who once worked overseas in Saudi Arabia, succeeded Founder Marulyn Canoy as the Chief Instructor of Supreme Modern Combat (SMC) upon the latter’s death. Several months after the Negros Occidental Chapter of the Wushu Federation of the Philippines (WFP) was successfully reorganized in 2003 by different clubs with Joery Amante of the Black Falcon Martial Arts Association-Main (BFMAA-Main) as Provincial Coordinator and had it running, Magbanua got involved in Wushu Sanshou and in a highly disputed way, was designated by Arnold Tinagan Sensei of the Iloilo Tinagan Martial Arts Club as Bacolod Coordinator although there was already someone duly appointed, also by Tinagan, to the position a little while back. Magbanua was named representative of Wushu Sanshou in the Union of Martial Arts of Negros Bacolod (UMAONEBA) under the leadership of Atty. Emilio Alimon, one time manager of the Bacolod City Water District (BACIWA). Magbanua sent a number of his students to Manila to compete at the National Wushu Championships as well as in regional and local level tournaments. Among his students were Dennis and Jonally Villacrusis. He also did some officiating at some Wushu Sanshou tournaments. Magbanua was one of the Co-Founders of the Brotherhood of Mixed Martial Artists of Bacolod (BOMB) on December 6, 2003, although he did not support the first ever project of the group, the 1st Gaisano-BOMB Mixed Martial Arts Eliminations and Expo, the first ever MMA tournament in Western Visayas, on February 1, 2004 at the Atrium area, Gaisano City Bacolod Supermall, Araneta St., Bacolod City. Magbanua, who was the sole bread winner for a family of 9, earned his living in front of the Gaisano Department Store until he later transferred across the street, outside the De La Rama Center. He had a rank of 6th degree black belt upon his death.

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