First Filipino Constabulary Chief



The first Filipino to become director of the defuct Philippine Constabulary, Rafael Crame was born on October 2, 1863 in Malabon, Rizal. He was the son of an officer in the artillery corps of the Spanish army in the Philippines, Rafael Ma. de Crame y Gonzales Calderon, and Maria Perez de Tagle.


After studying at the Ateneo de Manila, he enrolled in the Spanish military academy in 1879-1881. Once completed his cadetship, he was employed by the Spanish government in the Negociado de Contrebucion Territorial. He was a government official in the Administracion de Hacienda Publica when Philippine Revolution broke out in 1896.


Crame successively served with the battalion of volunteers organized by the Spanish army, as private, corporal, and sergeant from August 29,1896 to June 1898. He had been promoted to the rank of first lieutenant, and subsequently was promoted to captain. Unfortunately, when the city police force in Manila was reorganized, he was one of those canned out as only four of the sixteen police officers with rank of captain were retained.


When the Philippine Constabulary organized sometime in 1902, Crame joined it at the invitation of Captain Alkinson. Starting at fourth-class inspector, he rose rapidly to second lieutenant on March 1 1903; first lieutenant on September 15, 1903; Captain on March 15, 1905; assistant superintendent of infantry division on November 1, 1905; lieutenant colonel and assistant director on December 1, 1907; full-fledge colonel and assistant chief on February 13,1914; and acting chief on December 17, 1917.

Crame served the PC with distinction. He held the participation campaign in Cavite province by breaking up ladron bands and capturing their leaders. He was commended for the successful prosecution of the case of Mariano Noriel, a revolutionary soldier. In his capacity as acting superintendent of the information division in 1913, he was commended by Brig. Gen. H. Bandholtz on the occasion of the recovery of the stolen Corregidor plans.


Crame married thrice. He had three children Maria, Luis, Rafael by his first wife, Soledad Fernandez, gave birth to Soledad and Teresa. He had eight children by his third wife, Concepcion Fernandez, namely: Antonio, Concepcion, Jose, Pilar, Filomena, Juan, Inea, and Nieves.


A true soldier and peace officer, he died on January 1, 1927, exactly 10 years of dedicated service as PC chief.



Tuso, Miriam G.

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