The last titled beauty from the fabled Carnivals of Manila was Iluminada Mojica Tuason. She was the only daughter of Rogelia Mojica of Indang, Cavite with a certain Tuason of Manila, who died while Lumen was still very young. Her mother remarried Jose Rosales of Butuan, where they ran a piano business. Lumen would have seven half-siblings from her mother’s second marriage: Loida, Perla, Angel, Josefa, Angelina, Rogelio and Fe.
Despite it being the last Carnival, Iluminada’s reign as 1939 Miss Philippines was marked with the usual splendor and extravaganza. Her court included Estrella Fabon (Miss Luzon), Adela Planas (Miss Visayas) and Herminia Cajulis (Miss Mindanao). Fabon and Cajulis had been fellow contestants the year before in the search for Bb. Perlas ng Silangan, another national beauty search.
THE 1939 MISS PHILIPPINES COURT OF BEAUTY. With Lumen as Miss Philippines are Estrella Fabon (Miss Luzon), Adela Planas (Miss Visayas) and Herminia Cajulis (Miss Mindanao).
Two years after her reign, Lumen met Ramon Calleja Fernandez of Albay, who had been a top law student at the University of the Philippines and a classmate of future Philippine president, Ferdinand E. Marcos. In his U.P. days as an ROTC officer, Fernandez had been assigned to provide escort duties to Lumen and her court. But Fernandez’s had no real interest in the Carnival; after all, he had supported the candidate from the University of the Philippines.
AND THEN THERE WAS LUMEN. The light of the 1939 Carnival, Lumen married a legal luminary in the person of Ramon Fernandez, a classmate of Ferdinand Marcos at the U.P.
After graduating Valedictorian from law school, Fernandez took the bar and placed second to Marcos. He quickly proved his legal brilliance by winning an important case for a client who turned out to be Lumen’s aunt. This led to the fortuitous meeting that led to their romance and culminated in a wedding in Manila in 1941, just before the outbreak of World War II. The family relocated to the home province of Ramon Fernandez—in Albay—where they lived and waited it out through the Liberation. They had three children: Linda, Ramon Jr., and Pilar. A fourth child was conceived in 1949 but the young Lumen died tragically died in childbirth.