In a remarkable tale of determination and resilience, 2LT Godffrey Blaquera Paligan, hailing from the vibrant city of Tabuk in Kalinga, with roots in Pasil and Tanudan, has shattered barriers by becoming the very first Ikalinga to join the prestigious Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). His journey is not just a personal triumph but a beacon of inspiration for his community and beyond.
A Dream Deferred but Never Abandoned
Paligan's path to the RCMP was paved with obstacles. Despite setbacks in his attempts to enter the Philippine National Police Academy and the Philippine Military Academy, he refused to let failure define him. Undeterred, he pursued a Bachelor of Philosophy at Saint Louis University in Baguio City, with unwavering determination to contribute to public safety.
A Journey Across Continents
Life took an unexpected turn when Paligan and his family migrated to Canada in 2010. However, he didn't let geographical boundaries hinder his dreams. Returning to the Philippines to complete his law degree, he faced the challenges of reintegration into a different educational system.
In 2012, he took the Bar examination.
"We dreamed someday if we will pass the bar exam, we will apply at NBI or apply lateral entry... Nevertheless, neither came through on my part because I moved to Canada, but my good friend was successful," he said.
After migrating back to Canada, Paligan experienced the harsh reality of job instability, facing layoffs multiple times. Despite exploring various trades to make ends meet, he felt an undeniable void-a calling unmet.
Despite pursuing a different path, Paligan shared the realities of his Canadian experience, stating, "Life in Canada is not easy. I've been laid off from work three times. It was hard because bills do not stop coming." In his pursuit of stability, he explored various trades like carpentry, welding inspections, labor, forklift operation, and building maintenance.
Fulfilling the Dream: From Layoffs to Law Enforcement
In a testament to his perseverance, Paligan made a life-altering decision to join the RCMP, marking the realization of his lifelong dream. The yearning to serve and protect as a law enforcer prevailed over the hardships he faced in Canada. Paligan officially reported for duty on Nov. 13, 2023, at Cold Lake, Alberta, a momentous occasion for both him and the Ikalinga community.
Continuing the Journey: Education and Community Influence
Paligan's commitment to personal and professional growth extends beyond law enforcement. Currently in his fourth year of a Correctional Studies degree, he exemplifies the belief that learning is a lifelong journey.
Inspiring a Community: The Ikalinga Ripple Effect
Paligan's historic achievement in joining the RCMP is not merely an individual triumph. It serves as an inspiration for Ikalingas and Cordillerans, encouraging them to envision a future in law enforcement. With only two Cordillerans in the RCMP and the military, Paligan aims to pave the way for more of his "kakailian" (fellowmen) to follow suit.
"Ikalingas or kakailian from Cordillera is growing, and I believe only 2 of us from Cordillera were members. So, by joining RCMP and Military, I hope our kakailian will be influenced and will have interest joining too," he passionately conveyed.
In breaking down barriers and pursuing his dreams against all odds, 2LT Godffrey Blaquera Paligan embodies the spirit of resilience and determination. His story is a testament to the idea that one person's journey can ignite a spark of hope and possibility for an entire community.