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Rafael de Echagüe Biography

Rafael de Echagüe y Méndez de Vigo or Rafael de Echagüe Bermingham also known as General Gipuzkoa - was born in San Sebastian Spain on February 13, 1815 and died in Madrid Spain on November 23, 1887. Echague Isabela

After finishing his own studies, he joined as an officer in the battalion called Txapelgorris, formed in 1883 to fight the Carlist and defend the throne of Elizabeth II. Then he went into the army lines, wanting to end the civil war, he had two gallons of lieutenant colonel. Later promoted to Brigadier and became front of the regiment attended the Princess of the announcement of 1854, under whose triumph he was serving on the Field Marshal.

In the last months of 1859, went with his Division to Ceuta, and soon took over the house-fortress called the Seraglio, defended by the Moroccans. Their courageous behavior and the wound he received in his hand, had been awarded the second braid of lieutenant general, and with this recognition he continued the rest of his campaigns. He held the Captaincy General of Valencia, from 1860 to 1862, and became Governor and Captain General of Puerto Rico. 

After two years of campaign in Puerto Rico he went to the Philippine Islands where he remained three years as Governor and Captain General (1862-1865). Before he came, the Province of Isabela was already created by a royal decree issued on May 1, 1856 in honor of Queen Isabela II of Spain. They have settled large forces in this region where a town was named after him, called “Echague” located in southern part of Isabela Province.

After 1868, he served the Department of Engineers, the General Command of the Royal Palace Alabarderos and other charges of importance.

Gipuzkoa became senator in 1876 under the label of moderate liberal. He had the great cross of Charles III, Queen Isabella and San Hermenegildo.

After his death his body was transferred to San Sebastian Spain, where he was born and received by representatives of the civil and military authorities and a splendid funeral procession was given to his remains in which there were a lot of distinguished people of his beloved San Sebastian attended. In the afternoon session of the same day, the City Council agreed to put a street in San Sebastian in honor of his service, located between the street and the Paseo Nuevo Aldamar or Salamanca. The City Council move his remains and those of his wife to this city and phrases uttered in him as good Basque Euskera.
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