Wednesday, September 26, 2012

228. Queen of the Iloilo Carnival : AIDA KILAYKO

In one of the earliest petit fairs of Iloilo, the lovely Aida “Aiding” Kilayko reigned as the 1925 queen. Her parents were Eugenio Copa Kilayko and Celsa Lizares, both from landed families of Talisay, Negros Occidental, who owned large sugar haciendas and prosperous farm holdings. Aida was educated at the Assumption College in Iloilo, and excelled in piano. As a young member of the “buena sociedad Ilongga”, Aida was also known for being a cultured and refined young woman.

After her coronation as Iloilo’s carnival queen, she was back in Manila to continue her Pharmacy course at the Centro Escolar de Señoritas. By December 1925, she was in the front page again as one of the winners of Philipine Free Press’ search for the 4 most representative types of “Bellezas Filipinas”. Over two thousand pictures were received as entries of the popular Manila paper; these were whittled down to 72, then 24 finalists. A judging panel comprising of artists Fabian de la Rosa, Guillermo Tolentino, Fernando Amorsolo and Jorge Pineda chose the winners, headed by Manila Carnival contestants Rosario Panganiban, Salud Austria, Margarita Lacson and Aida Kilayko, who placed third. She won a gold panuelo pin for her win.

“Aiding” later married lawyer Julio Hernaez, whom she outlived. They had 4 children: Corazon, Maria Fe, Julian Jr. and Susan.

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