GPMCC Remembering Those We Lost

GPMCC DEDICATED TO PROMOTING GROWTH AND PROSPERITY THROUGH SELF-RELIANCE

In Memoriam

This page is dedicated to those we love but lost, and much too soon.


Ana Gloria Sotomayor

Ana Gloria Sotomayor

Ana was born February 19th and was our daughter. She was loving and stubborn, but never mean or abusive. She was the second of three girls, small in height but tall in love and personality. And we miss her.

Ana was a very quiet girl, she always kept to herself and never wanted to be the center of attention. These few words I write will never convey all she gave, all she meant to us. And that is the way she would want it to remain.

What can I say about my daughter, how can I put my feelings into words? How can I express the loss her mother, her bother, her sisters, and I feel? Those who have lost like us understand and no explanation is necessary. All I can say is the emptiness we feel will remain for a very long time, perhaps forever.

So I end these few words with this: Sleep in peace my daughter and forever rest in the arms of our Savior, until we meet again.

 


Robert Allen Cox

I know it may seem strange that I have more to say about Robert than I do our daughter. Ana was family, and family is personal. Robert was a good friend, a very good friend and I feel I need to pay tribute to him, and what he meant to us.

Robert Allen Cox

I met him in the 70's, he was my instructor at a drafting engineering school and we soon became very good friends. Robert always had a hard life, contracting polio when he was young it left him with several disabilities. But while he may have been disabled, he was full of life, hope and cheer.

I cannot recall a time when Rob was ever down in the dumps or discouraged. I'm sure he had those moments, I know he did but he never let his disabilities get in his way and I never considered him a cripple. In fact in his younger days he was driving and walking just fine. He always used a cane but nothing ever stopped him.

From the moment we met we developed a friendship which would last until now. We lost track of each other when I got deployed for a few years but we reconnected when I came back to the area. When we moved into our home we discovered we were within four miles (or less) of each other. In fact I helped them move into their current home back in the mid 70's. Just a memory of times gone by.

We had many BBQs and holiday dinners together and we often visited each other, but in hindsight maybe not as much as we should have. Still when he called and needed something I can proudly say I was there to help him. But he was also there for me when I needed to talk about something. That's friendship.

In later years he had to rely on a scooter for his mobility. He had two actually, a large one for local mobility and a smaller one which he took with him when he and his wife, Helen, went on vacation or traveled. Normally they would go cruising and Robert loved to cruise. His small scooter served him well at those times.

In June 2005 we took him and his wife Helen to Hawaii with us. One of the perks of owning a timeshare. It was a trip he really enjoyed and I can say we are happy we were able to take them with us.

We were sitting on the balcony overlooking the ocean when a bird flew by and landed close to us. It was then Robert mentioned that when he died, and if he could, he would come back as a bird, to fly whenever and wherever he wanted to. I knew then that his disabilities wore heavily upon him and I said nothing, for how does one respond to something like that.

Sometime after that trip Robert developed additional complications. The end result was he had to have a major nerve severed which left him more paralyzed than before. He couldn't drive any more and had a lot harder time walking and getting around. Even in his own home he sometimes relied upon the scooter for his mobility. Moving from the sofa to the dining room, a mere 20 steps, became an effort for him. Yet he never complained, at least not to me.

The paralysis left half his face numb; he said it was like being on Novocain all the time. It was something I could not, and cannot relate to. But he bore this setback well and always seemed to be happy.

Yet some thing's worried him and we would often talk about them. I would give him my opinion, my thoughts and being Robert he seemed to agree with them, at least in my presence. I'm sure when I left he and Helen would talk about how wrong I was, or how right I was. Makes no difference for Robert always had a respect for me, but I had a greater respect for him. Knowing me I could not live the way he was forced to live and I respect anyone with that type of personality. And Robert had personality.

One of the things that makes Robert live in my mind was a conversation we had back when he was my instructor. This was in the 70's and we were discussing how fast time was passing and he said something so simple but it has always stayed with me. He said: "Can you believe it's March already?"

Nothing earth shaking or profound but every year in March I remember that phrase and harken back to those days. Sometimes I wish I could relive those days, even though they were hard, they were also good. And Robert in his own way made them better.

Robert was diagnosed with lung cancer a few years ago and he seemed to beat it. But late 2012 it came back with a vengeance. I didn't know it came back as he never said. As long as I was getting emails from him I knew he was ok. The last email I got was January 25, 2013. It's the last email I will ever get from my friend.

On Monday March 11, 2013 Robert passed away. I was fortunate to see him two weeks prior but he was only a former shell of the man he was. Robert always had a strong handshake, very strong, but when he shook my hand that day, as I left it was so weak, so very weak. I knew then I would never see him alive again. And the tears, as then, even now flow.

Life played a cruel joke on a great man, a good man but he always accepted what was. I can honestly say my life is better because Robert entered it and made it better. I pray that now he soars like the bird he envied that day in Hawaii. Free from the physical ailments which kept him grounded in this life. I know he does.

So yes Robert, it is March already and March will never be the same.

Addendum:

I think it is both ironic and fitting that I would help him move one last time. On March 18, 2013 I had the honor, but sad duty, of being a pall bearer and helping him move into his final home. A home of soft rolling hills and beautiful green grass and trees. I think he likes it there, I know he does. But the best part is he is within walking distance now so I can see and visit him on a regular basis. You know, just to drop by and hello every once in awhile.

Sleep well my friend, sleep well, until we meet again on the other side.

 


Legacy

There is something to be said about funeral care and there is a vast difference between funeral homes. I've now had experience with two funeral homes, one for Robert and one for Ana. Both are good but we chose Legacy for Ana because of their reputation and recommendations. We were not disappointed.

If you live in the San Diego California area and find yourself in the unwanted situation of having to bury a loved one, Legacy should be considered. I know I sound like a commercial on this page but the care Legacy gave us cannot be denied.

And somehow, deep in my heart I know Ana appreciated it.