9th Commanding General, PAF

15 August 1967 - 27 May 1968


BRIG GEN EMMANUEL S CASABAR AFP was born in Lingayen, Pangasinan on 22 October 1915.

He graduated from Pangasinan Academic High School in 1933 and he was in his last year at the University of the Philippines taking up Mechanical Engineering when he passed the entrance examination at Philippine Constabulary Academy (now PMA) where he graduated on 14 Mar 1941. He later joined the Philippine Army Air Corps (PAAC) Flying School and belongs to class ‘41.

During the outbreak of World War II, he was initially assigned at Maniquis Field and later fought in Bataan as Platoon Leader of the PAAC Provisional Infantry Battalion. During the fall of Bataan to the Japanese on 09 April 1942, he was taken to Capas, Tarlac as a prisoner of war. After his release from the concentration camp, he joined the Central Luzon guerilla outfit under the late Colonel Enriquez as an infantry officer and later on as an intelligence operative. He succeeded in enlisting in the Japanese sponsored Philippine Constabulary, which was later instrumental in the intelligence gathering while he served with the Tarlac Guerilla Regiment until 12 January 1945. From that vantage point, he was able to relay information of vital interest to the guerilla movement in the country.

When he returned to military control in 1945, he was sent to various USAF Service Schools to take pilot refresher courses. In March 1951, he was sent to Air Command and Staff School of the Air University in Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, to undergo the Squadron Officer Course. In July 1954, he was sent back to U.S. at Williams Air Force Base in Phoenix, Arizona and took up Field Officers Course.

With the arrival of the supersonic F-5A “Freedom Fighters” in 1965, he trained for Jet Transition Course and Fighter Gunnery Course. From that time on, he logged much flying time with the newly acquired F-5A’s. It was during his tenure as Air Force Chief when the Philippine Air Force reached its zenith as the most developed air arm in the South East Asian region.

Before he assumed command of the PAF, he was 5th Fighter Wing Commander from 1962 to 1966, and 1st Air Division Commander from 10 August 1966 to 15 August 1967. General Casabar became the PAF Chief on 15 August 1967.

He is a recipient of various awards and decorations such as the Distinguished Service Star, Philippine Defense Medal, Philippine Liberation Medal, American Defense Medal, Asiatic-Pacific War Theater Campaign Medal, and Philippine Independence Ribbon, among others.

Brigadier General Casabar is married to the former Fausta G Martinez with whom he has seven children namely Jose, Roberto Carlos, Marilou, Ester, Fe, Cynthia and Belen.