US Ambassador Sung Kim (center) shares a toast with Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddy Locsin Jr. and Dean of Diplomatic Corps Gabriele Giordano Caccia.
Another well-attended Fourth of July celebration
THIS WEEK ON PEOPLEASIA - Babe Romualdez (The Philippine Star) - July 6, 2019 - 12:00am

Over 1,000 guests jam-packed the Rizal Ballroom of Shangri-La Makati during the Fourth of July celebration hosted by US Ambassador Sung Kim and his charming wife, Madame Jae Eun Chung.

Top government officials who joined the celebration included Executive Secretary Bingbong Medialdea, Senate President Tito Sotto, Finance Secretary Sonny Dominguez and Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddy Locsin Jr. who shared the stage with Ambassador Kim and Dean of the Diplomatic Corps Gabriele Giordano Caccia for the celebratory toast. Also in attendance were business bigwigs such as Dennis Uy of Udenna Corp., Megaworld’s Kevin Tan and Michael Tan of the LT Group, among many others.

Jun Periquet and Finance Secretary Sonny Dominguez.

Guests enjoyed the all-American fare such as hotdogs, burgers, pizza and the like from the booths put up by such popular brands like Pizza Hut, Kenny Rogers and Burger King. Some guests who came dressed up like Marvel characters — Thor, Captain America, Spider-Man and Gamora — were attention getters, with many posing with them for selfies.

The very successful event commemorating the 243rd anniversary of US Independence also served as the despedida (farewell party) for Ambassador Kim who will be departing by year-end. Since he officially started his tour of duty in the Philippines in December 2016, the American ambassador has become very popular due to his affable and charismatic personality.

Executive Secretary Bingbong Medialdea and Swedish Ambassador Harald Fries.

In fact, many consider him to be the most popular US diplomat ever not only because of his friendly and charming ways, but also because of his ability to keep relations between the US and the Philippines in good shape despite some occasional bumps.

But as the ambassador remarked, the Fourth of July not only celebrates US independence but also honors Fil-American Friendship Day — “a unique and symbolic expression of the strong and historic bond” between the Philippines and the United States.

With Ambassador Kim and PeopleAsia associate publisher Kevin Belmonte.

So much has been accomplished together by both nations in the last three years, among the most significant of which is the return of the Balangiga Bells to the country more than a century after they were taken by American soldiers.

Makati City Mayor Abby Binay, Ambassador Kim and Michael Tan.

“I’m very excited about what’s ahead of us, and confident that our shared values and interests, shared history and culture and most importantly, the mutual respect and affection between our peoples will carry our great partnership well into the future,” Ambassador Kim concluded.

Estonia Honorary Consul Fernando Peña, Kevin Belmonte and Leyte Rep. Martin Romualdez.

 

Art Lopez, Costa Rica Honorary Consul Fausto Preysler and Syrian Consul General Issam Eldebs. Photos by RAMON JOSEPH J. RUIZ

 

Dennis Uy and Kevin Tan.

FOURTH OF JULY CELEBRATION
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