Wednesday, July 8, 2009

A Sad Loss for Modesto Airport District

Rosario's Mother died within a couple of days of the death of my own Grandmother in 2004. I was just embarking on projects in the Modesto Airport District and the mourning of Rosario's mother and my own Grandmother were going hand in hand at the time. It was because of Rosario that many of my new clients, friends and family were even aware of the hardship I was experiencing in the days following the death of my Grandmother.

Rosario was always full of life - never seemed to run out of energy. My first meeting with her younger siblings was quite fantastic - they were such joyful and loving children, just as they are to this day. After my first encounter with the children, it was charming to hear that they did not want to take baths in fear of the little tattoos that I had drawn on their arms of roosters (my nickname in Airport - Pollo) might be washed off.

She was a perfect model citizen that would put the children before everything and take them everywhere with her. Many happy and joyful memories were had at Legion park where the kids would swim and run and chase squirrels that they mistook at the time for cats.

Rosario was one of the very few that I could rely on to provide for me translations, since at the time I could not speak any Spanish at all in a community where English was quite rare, she assisted me very much in immersing myself in, what to me, was a different culture.

I have nothing but fond memories of this wonderful person - as the years went on and the sporadic early evening searches we performed for missing children (who were just down the street the whole time) picnics, many "enchilada" times - many, many memories.

I was told last night that a young child in the neighborhood was struck with sadness throughout the day after seeing her picture on a donation can at one of the local "tiendas". His first battle with the acceptance of death of what was a family member.

In Airport District and beyond, Rosario will be dearly missed. She had such a bright future ahead of her and the way in which she lived her life was a testament to the human spirit and compassion that should always go with it.

In Loving Memory, Airport will never forget.

Copyright 2009 Robert Stanford all rights reserved.