MAJOR FACELIFT. With the 75th year anniversary of the Leyte Gulf Landings to be celebrated this year, the MacArthur Landing Memorial National Park in Candahug, Palo will undergo a major renovation, its first in 25 years.

PALO, Leyte – A national park named after American legendary general located in this town will undergo a massive facelift in time for the 75th Leyte Gulf Landings anniversary this year.
Remedios ‘Matin’ Petilla, mayor of this town, said that at least P50 million has been allocated by the national government to rehabilitate the MacArthur Landing Memorial National Park which sustained damage when Palo was hit by super typhoon ‘Yolanda’ in 2013.
Petilla, who is only to serve the town as mayor until June 30 of this year, said that the improvement of the park named after General Douglas MacArthur will include landscaping, construction of a view deck, amphitheater and a visitor center located in front of the park, and improvement of lights and sound system.
The last time the facility underwent improvement was in 1994 in time for the 50th Leyte Gulf Landings commemoration, the town mayor added.
“We are excited but at the same time worried that the project will not be finished before October, but we are determine to finish the improvement before we celebrate another milestone year of Leyte Landing Commemoration,” Petilla said.
The park’s Eternal Flame, which was constructed during the 50th year commemoration in 1994, will be refurbished.
The Eternal Flame features dedications carved in stone tablet of countries involved at the Battle of Leyte Gulf during World War II lead by the United States against the Japanese Forces.
The McArthur Landing Memorial National Park was damaged when the town was hit Yolanda in November 8, 2013.
For one, the statue of General Carlos P. Romulo was toppled due to the storm surge spawned by Yolanda.
Additional improvement of the park includes the construction of a two-storey building for coconut juice vendors located few meters away from the McArthur Park.
Pathways will be constructed along the tree park for people to enjoy walking under its shades.
A small bridge will be put up to have guests of the Leyte Oriental Hotel easy access to the park.
The MacArthur Landing Memorial National Park is situated in a 6.78 hectares in Barangay Candahug that features seven double-life-size bronze statues standing in a man-made pool depicting the arrival of McArthur in Leyte province, making good of his ‘I shall return’ promise.
The park was opened in 1981 coinciding the 37th Leyte Gulf Landings anniversary created by famous sculptor Anastacio Tanchauco Caedo, whose other works includes the Benigno Aquino Monument and the Bonifacio Monument in Pugad Lawin, Balintawak.
The MacArthur Leyte Landing Memorial National Park was declared as a national park on July 12, 1977 through Letter of Instructions No. 572 signed by President Ferdinand Marcos.