LUIS Y. FERRER, JR. (1940 – 1944)

LUIS A. FERRER, JR., the second in the family to become governor of Cavite – the elder Ferrer having been governor from 1919 to 1912 – was elected in 1940, succeeding Ramon Samonte. Two years later the Japanese came and occupied the Philippines. By force of circumstance Ferrer, Jr. had to continue as governor during part of the enemy occupation. When the Japanese-sponsored Second Republic under President Jose P. Laurel was inaugurated on October 14, 1943, Ferrer remained governor in the absence of a local election. However, he relinquished his job on May 2, 1944 when Colonel Mariano N. Castañeda, despite his protestations of ill health, was installed governor by the Japanese. Castañeda at the time was secretly leading the guerilla movement in the province.

Born in what is now known as “Barangay 96” in General Trias on July 8, 1901, Ferrer, Jr. was the second son of former Governor Luis O. Ferrer, Sr. and Isabel Asuncion. He had an elder brother, Jose, and a younger sister, Aurora. The young Luis finished the elementary grades in his hometown, and the secondary course in the Cavite National High School. He obtained his LL.B. degree from the Philippine Law School in 1925 at the age of 24. Immediately after passing the bar examinations he worked as assistant attorney in the law office of Dr. Jose P. Laurel. Afterwards he was offered the position of provincial fiscal of Mindoro, but he declined. However, he accepted the job of justice of the peace of the town of Cavite.

It is interesting to note that the young Ferrer was married twice to the same woman, Martina Sarayba, the first time on November 26, 1930, before Justice of the Peace Luis Gaerlan, and the second on December 21 before rev. Fr. Mariano Ayran of the Catholic parish of General Trias. Ferrer won Martina’s love after five years of courtship, but when his parents proposed their marriage the girl’s parents hedged, refusing to commit themselves one way or the other. The two lovers, Luis and Martina, then decided to elope and get married before the justice of the peace of Imus. It took Luis’ parents nearly a month to convince her parents to take the couple back into their fold. The second marriage ceremony had to be performed because they were devout Catholics.

The Ferrer couple had four children; namely, Florentina, Luz, Luis III, and Francisco. Ferrer, Jr. was serving as investigator of anomalies in the surplus depots of Batangas and the Ilocos region, during the administration of President Manuel A. Roxas, when he had a stroke which kept him bedridden. He died after a long illness on April 7, 1949 at the age of 47. To keep his memory alive, his widow, Mrs. Martina Sarayba Vda. De Ferrer, on November 27, 1979 donated a piece of land to the government in General Trias, which became the site of the Governor Ferrer Memorial Municipal High School.

[Source: Biodata written in Pilipino by Mrs. Martina Sarayba Vda. De Ferrer.]