Tag Archives: in-memoriam

A Little Rain Falling

I received word this afternoon that my uncle had passed away after a long illness. I cried a lot, I prayed a lot, and cried some more. He was a special man in many ways. He was a victim of a hit-and-run accident while he was helping someone stranded on the road. As a result, he was mentally handicapped (he never did like the “challenged” description, so there), but that never stopped him from living Life. And as I grieve, I am remembering how he grabbed Life by the horns, twisted its neck and threw it down yelling, “CHUPATELA!!!*”

Some of you may know of my credo of being happy every day. I’m not happy ALL day, mind you, but I do find something to be happy about every day. I learned that from him. He had a zest for life that made Zorba look like a piker. I remember once his sow lost a few piglets during birth. We were all sad, until he told us he “planted” them snout up, so the tree would grow and give us more piglets. I kid you not. And then there was the time when someone ask him to call them back, so he breathed in the word “hello” (because it was air going in, not out). Oh, and one time he decided that he wanted to sleep under the stars, so he got a photo of Marisol Malaret (the first Puertorican to win the Miss Universe title) and taped it to the ceiling. He was unstoppable.

He wasn’t perfect, but he was an inspiration to all of us. He is preceded by his oldest son, and I know they are both in Heaven, laughing at the rest of us who still have to wait to get to the party.

Because he was the party.

Te quiero mucho, Tio Papo. Esperame, que vengo con chismes y con ron de barrilitos 😀

* The equivalent of saying “SUCK IT!!” And the last sentence: I love you very much, Uncle Papo. Wait for me, because I’m coming with gossip and single barrel rum. 😀


One Year Like Yesterday

It has been a year since my brother-in-law Draco passed away. Time has made it easier for us to bear the loss, and to enjoy thinking of his exploits and funny stories. I think he would have appreciated passing away on the anniversary of Francis Scott Key’s penning of the Star Spangled Banner, too. Draco always did have a flair for the dramatic, though he was careful not to show it. Unless it concerned a martini. Then it had to be the right glass, the right garnish, the right vermouth, even the right pick. He was hilarious.

Sometimes I am caught unawares and the pain of the loss grips me. I was cleaning out a closet and found a shirt he had left behind, and suddenly a torrent of tears let forth, taking me by surprise. Before she left, Eldest’s biggest regret was not being able to wear the bracelet Draco made for her while in basic. And today Texas A&M plays Rice University. He always looked forward to every game, but the Rice games were special, because of the band. Rice’s MOB is rather…. unique, to say the least!

Draco my brother, you are still missed every day. And not a day goes by that I don’t offer up a prayer in Heaven for you and know you are there, looking down and screaming at Manziel to get it together while giving Dallas a scritch. And I promise not to wear any Aggie or maroon stuff. We both know I can jinx it if I do. So, I shall make your favorite dish for dinner in your honor, and we will raise our glasses of lemonade and toast to your memory. We love you…. then, now, and always 🙂


In Memoriam

In Flanders Field

by John MaCrae

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow,
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky,
The larks, still bravely singing, fly,
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead.
Short days ago,
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved and now we lie,
In Flanders Fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe
To you, from failing hands, we throw,
The torch, be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us, who die,
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow,
In Flanders Fields.

red poppies

Remembering those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.


On Muster

Today is the 178th anniversary of the Battle of San Jacinto, marking the birth of the Republic of Texas. Normally my post on this day is all about that. But this anniversary has a special meaning today. It is also the day of Aggie Muster. On this day, we come together to celebrate those Aggies who have passed away during the year.

aggie muster

Tonight, we shall be honoring my brother-in-law, known to the blog as LC Draco. We will get together and remember our times at Aggieland, and toast his memory as Aggies do. And during the Roll Call of the Absent, we shall answer, “HERE!!”

Roll Call for the Absent

In many lands and climes this April day
Proud sons of Texas A&M unite.
Our loyalty to country, school, we pray,
and seal our pact with bond of common might.

We live again those happy days of yore
on campus, field, in classroom, dorm, at drill
Fond memory brings a sigh — but nothing more;
Now we are men and life’s a greater thrill,

On Corregidor 72 years ago today
A band of gallant Aggies, led by Moore,
Held simple rites which led to us doth all to say:
The spirit shall prevail through cannon roar.

Before we part and go upon our way,
We pause to honor those we knew so well;
The old familiar faces we miss so much today
Left cherished recollections that time cannot dispel.

Softly call the Muster,
Let comrade answer, “Here!”
Their spirits hover ‘round us
As if to bring us cheer!

Mark them ‘present’ in our hearts.
We’ll meet some other day
There is no death, but life etern
For our old friends such as they!

Until then, Draco! WHOOP!!


Softly Call the Muster

To my brother Draco,

My heart grieves as it grips with your final goodbye. You were more than just a brother-in-law. You were a big brother, a buddy, and a friend. No matter what, you always knew you could come to me with anything, and often did. There were times when you made me pull my hair out in exasperation, but there were also times when you helped me in my troubles.

Just like a brother would.

I find myself listening to your voicemails, reading your texts and your messages. Hearing your voice again makes me smile, remembering the private jokes and the camaraderie we shared. This past year was not easy for you, but you made the best of it while you were here with us. We got to have you in our lives for eight months, and that in itself was a blessing from God. We still have the paracord bracelets you made, and the martini glasses you “acquired” for us, the beers you left behind, and the bottle of vodka you bought as a “thank you”. That bottle remains unopened on the shelf, waiting for the day when we can gather to celebrate you, Rottie style.

draco2

Yes the heart grieves, but it also remembers, and that will be the balm to comfort us. Rangers do lead the way, and you have never failed to do so. You lived more in your 48 years than most people do in two lifetimes. I pray you are at peace, and hope that in slipping the surly bonds that tethered you, you are now free. God bless and keep you, hermano. I am still, and know that you are with us.


No Ordinary Day

No matter how hard some people try to make this a day of service, or a sale at a store, this is no ordinary day.

On September 11th, we always remember.

911

And eleven years after that, another attack which left four Americans murdered in Benghazi, Libya.

benghazi-blood-on-the-hands

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” —  Edmund Burke

Forgetting lets evil win. Never, ever forget, and make sure to never let those who would choose to dismiss it forget, either.


On This Memorial Day

For me, it is one of the saddest holidays, and yet it is also filled with joy, knowing that such courage exists, and such sacrifices are made in defense of freedom.

The Wall Boots

I give thanks to all the men and women who paid the ultimate price so that I could speak, and worship, and complain, and demonstrate. And to do so in English.

May they never be forgotten, nor their sacrifices be in vain.


Nothing to Say

Except to ask for your prayers.

cross

I can not imagine such a vile and evil act, inflicting a carnage upon children.

Dear Heavenly father, please lift them up in Your loving arms. Give those who lost loved ones today the strength and comfort to help them.

In Your name,

Amen.


In Loving Memory

Thirteen years ago today, Texas A&M University suffered the greatest tragedy in its history.

Some may boast of prowess bold
Of the school they think so grand
But there’s a spirit can ne’er be told
It’s the Spirit of Aggieland.

We are the Aggies – the Aggies are we
True to each other as Aggies can be
We’ve got to FIGHT boys
We’ve got to fight!
We’ve got to fight for Maroon and White
After they’ve boosted all the rest
They will come and join the best
For we are the Aggies – the Aggies are we
We’re from Texas A.M.C.

From the outside looking in, you can’t understand it. And from the inside looking out, you can’t explain it. We are family.

And as a comrade, I answer, “Here”.


We Remember

And we shall never forget.

We woke up that day. Let us remember the sacrifices, and never forget the reason. And above all, let us remain vigilant.

Always.