My Beloved Brother - Junior
by Maxine Torres
(San Francisco, CA)
First and foremost, I would like to thank "each and every one" of you for your support and prayers for my family over the past two very difficult weeks. It means a lot to me and my family to know how much my brother has "touched" so many lives.
To sum up what Junior meant to me in a few short paragraphs is impossible. I am not even used to him being gone yet. I have been so overwhelmed with emotions.
Anyone who knew Junior, knew how much he loved his family. He worked hard to provide for his family. He was such a selfless person. He was a beautiful person inside and out. I am so incredibly grateful and blessed to have shared this precious life on earth with him.
Junior was taken way too soon; however, I know he was greeted in Heaven by both my Mom & Dad. "Life" is a gift from God. I was extremely blessed to have him as my "baby brother" for 51 precious years. Although, he had a short life, it was so very full and filled with "love and laughter" with so many Amazing moments.
Junior was loved by everyone! He was such a warm person. He had such a good spirit and a huge heart! Although he was quiet, his presence was always known. He was such an easy person to get along with. My brother had so many amazing qualities which is what I will miss most! He fancied a very simple lifestyle. It did not take much to make him happy.
He had a passion for cooking and would seek new recipes on-line. He would even send me photos of his awesome baking. The other day Marilou even showed me packets of seasoning that Junior kept stored in a plastic container. He would always be ready to cook a meal at a moment’s notice. That was my brother! - he made sure everyone was comfortable and taken care of.
When we were younger, Junior was the sibling that was always asked to do chores and he never complained. When we were teens, he used to always escort me to the shopping mall when I needed someone to accompany me. He was always reliable and could be counted on. Junior was my Dad's shadow. Believe it or not, he learned how to drive a car at age 10. Growing up, my Dad taught him how to do some plumbing and fix things around the house. While I was reminiscing with Marilou, she mentioned that Junior would even volunteer to repair friend's homes in need of repair/plumbing. And of course, you know how that goes...word of mouth. Soon, circle of friends would call upon Junior to help out.
One thing for sure, is that my Dad instilled such great values and the importance of family in all of his children, and I believe Junior will also pass on his legacy.
"Marilou": you were the "love of his life". "Joshua": you were his "shining light and laughter". "Joemar": he was so "honored to call you his son". Benjamin was his first born and will always have a special place in his heart. "Joemar", please take good care of your Mom and Joshua while your Dad guides you from Heaven. Please always check in with Auntie Gail to make sure she's okay.
"Marilou", I want to take this opportunity to "thank you" for loving my brother "unconditionally" and for being such a special part of his life. From the bottom of my heart, I appreciate all the sacrifices you made during his hospital stay and for being there for him "endlessly". "I" was very blessed to have been with Junior during his final days on earth. "Thank you" Marilou, Joshua and Joemar for being with me by his bedside, for sharing "love and light" as Junior peacefully departed. He was ready to go home to be with our Lord.
Thank you Junior for being there for Kelsey-Shanelle in time of need and for helping her move into her new condo. Thank you for helping her install her TV and inviting her over for those wonderful lunches and dinners that she would always share with me. Thank you for spending "precious" time with her. She is so very blessed to have known such an Amazing Uncle!
Thank you for spending quality time with our sister Gail and for providing her with a ride to work whenever she needed one - for always being so dependable. Gail has such a "heavy heart" without you and is having such a difficult time coping with your loss. Her heart is aching!
That 100 watts smile - so "contagious”, and that "laughter" was so endearing.
Marilou shared some recent photos of Junior and what stood out were the ones with their grandson "Jah-Jah" - the photos truly depicts how happy Junior was. I MISS him so! It's so painful to be on this journey of losing my brother. I wish he was still here! We went out to lunch the other day, and Junior was missing. I am reminded everywhere I am that he is missing and no longer here. I can never pick up the phone to call him again and hear his beautiful voice, or tell him "I love him" again.
My sister Gail will no longer be able to have her morning coffee with him. My daughter Kelsey-Shanelle will never be able to enjoy his amazing meals again. Life will never be the same without him! My heart is bleeding and broken! I wish I had spent more time with him and talked to him more often. I am "immensely" grateful that the Lord allowed me to spend time with him during his final days and allowed me to say "good-bye". I will always LOVE him and am deeply "blessed" for our time on earth together.
"Junior", May you go in peace and be with our Lord and with Mama & Daddy. Heaven now has a new Angel to look after us. You will FOREVER be in my heart and will always be my baby brother. I LOVE YOU!