Thursday, June 16, 2011

A wonderful man

I received the call last night from Aunt Donna.
Regretted to inform us that her husband, our Uncle John
had passed away.
These pictures were taken on our last visit to North Carolina
two years ago.
We are all saddened by this news.
He was the only tie HOBL had to the Riera family.
Some may not know that although we carry the Riera
name proudly, HOBL knew very little about his biological
father until we made contact with Uncle John when Baby Boy
was a baby. After having BB I felt the need to find someone
on the Riera side who could give us information
about the Daddy HOBL never knew.
The relationship started with a simple Christmas card
to Uncle John and Aunt Donna explaining that we now
had a baby boy and wanted to have ties to Riera's.
Since that Christmas, we have been family.
Uncle John and Aunt Donna have always made
sure to contact us often by writing, calling, visiting
and remembering my children on their birthdays.
After Uncle John's stroke years ago, he slowed down a bit
but he always made it a point to stay in touch with us.
To give us information that was precious to us,
to tell us stories that we will remember forever.
In the last few years, Uncle John was much better at
communication with us than we were and for that
I am so very thankful. Just a few weeks ago, I reminded HOBL
that he had not spoken to Uncle John in some time and
a phone call was warranted. That evening he called his Uncle John
and they had a long conversation about Jillian, work,
all those things that Uncle John always reminded us were important.
Just a few days after that I got a card and letter in the mail
from Uncle John. He was great about this, I lately had
not been so good about returning letters.
That day, however, I felt the need to write back and I did.
I did not delay. I apologized for lately not being the
communicator I should have been and there were no
excuses. I promised to get better again as at one time
I wrote to them at least monthly.
Having gotten the dreaded phone call yesterday
I was so grateful that I had sent that letter.
Our Uncle John knew how important he was to us.
A fine man died this week, the kind that are rare to find
in today's world. He carried his name, Riera proudly.
Told stories constantly of our heritage.
I hope he knows that we too, will continue to carry
the Riera name proudly.
He will be missed greatly by many.
Aunt Donna, we love you and although we can't
make the funeral, we will be there to visit you soon.

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