Rico and Melannie Hizon: Their own final word

The country’s leading broadcaster and his wife celebrate 25th year anniversary—with his 95-year-old father walking the aisle

After the Mass celebrating their renewal of vows, Rico and Melannie Hizon walk down the aisle to the applause of friends. (Photo by Thelma Sioson)

Celebrating the 25th year of togetherness in marriage is a blessing a couple must be thankful for. Now, having one’s 95-year-old parent walk the aisle during this celebration is no ordinary blessing. It is simply incredible.

That was one blessing Rico and Melannie Hizon enjoyed when they celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary Aug. 12, 2023 with kin and a few close friends. Rico led his 95-year-old father Jose Hizon in a slow but very steady walk to the altar at the start of the entourage march. That the father of the country’s leading broadcast journalist was able to complete the march—and with a warm patrician smile at that—left the guests in awe. That expression rivaled Rico’s signature boyish grin that has become a staple feature of news channels, CNN now and before that, BBC.

Rico Hizon walks down the aisle with Jose Hizon, his 95-year-old father. (Photo by Thelma Sioson)

The couple’s principal sponsors followed, led by National Artist BenCab and his lifetime partner Annie Sarthou. Rico met BenCab at the start of his career in broadcast journalism, when he went to Luz Gallery to interview the artist about his exhibit. This interview became the start of a life-long friendship between the broadcast journalist and the artist, and also shaped Rico’s eye for collecting art.

BenCab and Annie were followed by the other principal sponsors, to the soft strains of Mabel’s String Quartet: Vince Socco and Annabel Wisniewski, Wellington Soong and Vivian Yuchengco, Dr. Tony Herrera and Carmen Seah.

Shortly after, to Arman Ferrer’s soaring voice, the church doors opened and strode in the bride escorted by the couple’s only child Migo Hizon. Melannie fought back tears of happiness as she walked slowly to the altar where Rico waited. Many of the guests were teary-eyed as they witnessed the couple and their son come together in a tight embrace at the altar. No blessing, for a family, could be greater than such a moment.

Fr. Jose Francisco Syquia presided over the renewal of marriage vows. The bridal entourage: maid of honor Cris Syquia, with Roberto Syquia; flower girls Carrot Syquia and Bianca Alvarez; bridesmaids Maricar Dizon, Fara Lacson, Hazel Naval, Tina Santos, Claudelle Tan; ring bearer Migo Hizon.

The reception that followed at the Forbes Pavilion was attended by relatives and a few close friends and colleagues of the couple, both here and from Singapore where the couple started a family and lived for many years. Melannie, then flying with Northwest Airlines, and Rico met on a blind date in Hong Kong when, Rico recalled the moment before the captive audience in the pavilion, he knew right away “she was the one.” They tied the knot 10 months after that blind date.

Many of the guests were the couple’s friends from Hong Kong and Singapore where Rico built a career as one of the region’s leading broadcasters (CNBC and BBC).

Rico Hizon with longtime media friends Leah Salterio, Thelma Sioson, Ivy Lisa Mendoza

The couple returned home a few years ago and Rico reclaimed his dominant place in Philippine news broadcasting—The Final Word with Rico Hizon on CNN Philippines.

That night in August, we were one collective witness to a memorable milestone:  Rico and Melannie renewed their own final word.—Thelma Sioson

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