The CNMI bids goodbye today to Bernard Arthur Villagomez Hofschneider, one of the Marianas Political Status Commission negotiators that hammered out the Covenant that enabled the islands to join the American political family. Villagomez passed away on Oct. 27 and will be buried today. He was 74.
“He’s been a longtime public servant and leader, and a devout Catholic. That’s how I would want the CNMI to remember him,” one of his youngest nephews, Lt. Gov. Jude U. Hofschneider, told Saipan Tribune yesterday.
The lieutenant governor said the last time he spoke with his uncle was on Columbus Day, on Oct. 14.
That day, his uncle reminded him to always “do what’s right” and to make sure that people do not forget those who helped in the formative years of the islands leading to it being a part of the United States.
“It didn’t dawn on me that it would be the last time I’d talk to him. He’s well-mannered, very articulate, and intelligent,” the nephew said.
Bernard V. Hofschneider, who hails from Tinian, passed away at the Commonwealth Health Center on Oct. 27. He is survived by his wife, Guadalupe “Lupe” DLG Reyes Hofschneider, and children.
At 7:30am today, his remains will be brought from Borja Funeral Homes to Mount Carmel Cathedral for service and rosary. Visitation and last respects begin at 8:30am.
Mass of Christian burial is at 11am, followed immediately with interment at the Mount Carmel Cemetery in Chalan Kanoa.
Besides Hofschneider, the other members of the Marianas Political Status Commission were negotiators Edward DLG. Pangelinan, chairman; Vicente N. Santos, vice chairman; Juan LG. Cabrera (dec.), Vicente T. Camacho, Daniel T. Muña, Dr. Francisco T. Palacios (dec.) Joaquin I. Pangelinan, Felix F. Rabauliman (dec.), Oscar C. Rasa, Manuel A. Sablan, Pedro A. Tenorio, Jose R. Cruz (dec.), Benjamin T. Manglona and Joannes R. Taimanao (dec.).