MANILA - Several senators mourned the death of former Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez on Monday, crediting the advertising executive for boosting Philippine tourism with his "More Fun in the Philippines" campaign.
Jimenez's family earlier said the former Tourism chief's death was not related to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
"Many will remember Sec. Mon as the man behind the famous campaign that took the world by storm," Sen. Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan said in a statement.
"'It’s More Fun in the Philippines' resonated everywhere because he (Jimenez) knew the heart of the Filipino," he said.
Pangilinan described "Mon J" as a "man who loved and served his country well" regardless if he was working for the government or the private sector.
"I will always remember Sec. Mon as the man who loved and served his country well, in or out of government," he said.
Pangilinan and Jimenez both served as Cabinet members of President Benigno Aquino III. The late Tourism secretary joined Aquino's team in 2011, while the minority senator worked as Presidential Assistant for Food Security and Agriculture Modernization from 2014 to 2015.
Sen. Sonny Angara reminisced about Jimenez's visit to his home province Aurora to check on Baler's "tourism potential."
"We lost a good man today, a friend and former Tourism Secretary and top advertising exec," Angara said in an Instagram post.
"I imagine Mon will be happiest reuniting with his beloved wife Abby who passed away a few years ago," he said.
Prior to his government stint, Jimenez was a senior consultant and joint chief executive officer of WOO (Winning Over Obstacles) Consultants with his wife Annabelle "Abby" Lee-Jimenez.
He also served as vice-president and executive creative director at Ace-Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising from 1988 to 1989 before heading JimenezBasic Advertising from 1989 to 2008.