by Peter P. Plueckebaum – On Sunday, January 04, 2009 the message of the sad news of the sudden death of Sir Alex Mushake rushed to the members of the Brotherhood of the Knights of Rizal in Germany, Europe and Worldwide. The immediate reactions of the Brother Knights were numerous letters of condolence to Lady Jane Mushake and family.
Many Brother Knights immediately offered their help and support. On request of the Mushake Family Sir Lucien Spittael, the best friend of Sir Alex among the Brother Knights, coordinated the activities of the Brotherhood including the attendance of the funeral including the attendance at the funeral.
The representation of the Supreme council and the Supreme commander by Sir George Poblete qas gladly welcomed. Sir George did not hesitate to come from Toronto despite of the desperate air traffic conditions in North America to pay the due respect to one of the most outstanding Brother Knights.
As Sir George Poblete arrived already on Sunday a day prior to the funeral a small sightseeing program was organised for him: Travel through the deeply frozen areas of Germany and a visit to the Rizal Monument in Wilhelmsfeld, where we were welcomed by Sir Rainer Weber, Commander of the Wilhelmsfeld Chapter. Sir Rainer Weber briefed Sir Poblete and the other members of the entourage (Sir Francois Ooms and Lady Minda, Sir Lucien Spittael and Lady Madeline and Sir Peter Plückebaum) on the history of the Rizal Park and the development of the Rizal Monument. Sir Rainer also brought the group to visit the house of Pfarrer Ulmer (which was became the home of the Weber family).
Later that evening the group visited Lady Jane and family at their home in Trautheim and joined her at the evening mass in Darmstadt. Lady Jane generously invited the entire group to join her for a meal Chinese restaurant near by.
Later in the evening, the Brother Knights present, Sir George Poblete, Sir Francois Ooms, Sir Lucien Spittael and myself, discussed the “Necrological Rituals” prescribed by the manual and adjusted them to the actual situation.
On the next morning the Brother Knights from all over Germany gathered at our hotel for changing into uniform.
In the Church the Knights formed a guard of honour for the decaesed Brother. Incorporated in the funeral ceremony was speech by Sir George Poblete on behalf of the Supreme Commander, which included his personal and long friendship and affection to Sir Alex. Sir Peter Plueckebaum translated his words for the Germans attending. In his obituary Sir Rainer Weber stressed the importance of Wilhelmsfeld for Sir Alexander’s towards Europe’s foremost Rizalist and his manifolds committment for his Home Chapter and he expressed the deep and everlasting gratitude of his fellow Knights. The final speaker of the Brotherhood was Sir Manfred Schnell, Consul Honorary of Potsdam also on behalf of the Philippine diplomtic staff. He emphasised the importance and value of the reaearch and work of Sir Alex on the live and work of Dr. Jose Rizal and the Philippines to all true European Rizalists.
Following the completion of the the mass and the funeral ceremonies a huge crowd consisting of officials of the City of Trautheim, representatives of the many organisations, which had been supported by Sir Alex, members of the Trautheim catholic community, Filipino and German friends and of course, the members of the Knights of Rizal present accompanied the coffin to its final resting place.
Attending Knights and Ladies for Rizal:
Supreme Council: Sir George Poblete, KGOR, Supreme Archivist, Toronto
European Region: Sir Peter P. Plueckebaum, KCR, Deputy Regional Commander
Belgium: Sir Francois Ooms; KCR, and Lady Minda (El Fili Chapter)
Sir Lucien Spittael, KGOR, and Lady Madeline (El Fili Chapter)
Berlin: Sir Manfred Schell, KGOR, Honorary Consul Potsdam, and Lady Stella
Bonn: Sir Celso Lacuna, KGOR, Deputy Commander and Lady Helen
Sir Peter Plueckebaum, KCR, Commander and Lady Jennifer Sir Ewald Schmalz, KOR, and Lady Tess
Cologne Metro: Sir Kandler, KCR Commander with Lady Daisy
Sir Ziegon, KCR Deputy Commander with Lady Anita
Heidelberg: Sir Rainer Weber, KCR, Commander
Sir Kilian Schwarz, KOR, Deputy Commander with Lady Annie Sir Manfred Sprenger, KCR, and Lady Alicia
Sir Werner Filsinger, KCR, and Lady Rosaly
Sir Baumann, KCR,
Sir Karl – Heinz Wionzek, KCR, and wife
Sir Manfred Rohe, KOR
Lady Naomi Billard
Following the funeral reception the Knights present held a two hours meeting with Sir George Poblete. Sir George Poblete explained the expectations of the Order from the Chapters, the elected and the appointed officers.
He encouraged all members and officers present to voice out their questions and problems. This opportunity was used by all officers present and many valid problems and questions were raised.and described. Sir Poblete promised to submit the worries and concerns to the Supreme Council and the Supreme Commander. He explained that he could not deliver immediate solutions to these problems some of which are already existing and pending for some years.
At the request of Sir Poblete, Sir Peter Plückebaum summarised the meeting and expressed the confidence, that Sir Poblete would bring the guanine concern and questions raised by the committed and deicated Knights to the Supreme Council so that just and honorable solutions could be found for all these problems. The burdens and problems of the past must not be allowed to stay as a hindrance for the co – operation of of all members and Chapters for the future. Sir Peter also explained to Sir George, that the Commanders Meeting held in Bonn last December was a legitimate, serious and genuine attempt by the Region to analyse the past, find solutions for thepending questions and look forward. The meeting had been the first step for a new beginning, and the start for common activities and co-operation in the Region for a brighter future.