Delighted to receive a thank you letter from Nenuca Valera Evangelista, wife of the late Paoay former mayor Tony Evangelista.....
Dear Friends and Relatives, (mine and hubby's name written in her own handwriting)
Today, September 9, 2011, is the ninth day after Tony's passing. As we pray for him, we remember all who in one way or another made his leaving us more bearable.
It was a roller coaster ride for us when Tony got sick two months before he died. But as we look back, we realize that those days were a blessing and a source of grace from God. So many people were praying for him - our Paredes - Valera relatives, the priests and our friends at Mary the Queen Parish, St. Augustine Parish of South San Francisco, Our Lady of Lourdes and St. Therese of Lisieux churches in France, St. Jude Shrine in New Jersey, the Benedictine nuns in Vigan, the Pink Sisters of Quezon City, our in-laws and many more friends and relatives so numerous to mention one by one. Most importantly, Tony had enough time to pray for himself, to receive the Holy Eucharist and to receive the Last Rites three times.
Tony was not perfect but he lived a full life. He very much valued friendship and to him. We believe these traits service was paramount.When he helped people, there were no conditions. It was always genuine service without expecting anything in return. He was generous to a fault. He stood up for his beliefs and principles. He accepted the outcome of his decisions with humble resignation. We believe these traits are the reasons why he was loved by many. When he retired from public office, the had the time to enjoy the company of his children and grandchildren whom he left behind in Manila when he went to serve the people of Paoay as Mayor for twelve years. We thank God for blessing us with the opportunity to spend the last years of Tony's life loving him, taking care of him, and praying with him.
The expression of sympathy we received upon his demise overwhelmed us; from the single word "condolence" sent through text to the sympathetic letter; the phone calls, the firm hand-shake to the tightest hug, the volunteered help to make arrangements for a solemn and dignified funeral service; the abundant food brought by friends, some of which were Tony's favorites, the generous financial help, the millions of beautiful flowers which brightened our tear-soaked eyes, the soulful music that soothed our grief, the thousands of masses offered for the repose of his soul, the hundreds of people who stayed with us during the three-day wake, and those who came to say goodbye to him as we brought him to his final resting place. All these filled to overflowing the vacuum created in our hearts when Tony left us. It is from there that we draw strength as we try to move on without him.
Words cannot express how grateful our family is for all the kindness and compassion conveyed to us during this difficult time. We really appreciate every act of kindness you have shown us in so many beautiful ways. Your thoughtfulness has been a comfort to us and will never be forgotten.
Thank you very much and God bless you all.
Nenuca & Children