Uncle Claro (11/4/1948 - 5/18/2009)
One year ago today, my future father-in-law, Claro D. Jocson sadly lost his short battle with pancreatic cancer. He is survived by his wife, Linda of 32 years, and their three kids, Chris, Justin and Jill. Claro found out he had cancer three weeks before he passed away. He had one treatment of chemo before his body gave out and he peacefully passed away (and I’d like to believe painlessly). However, on this one year anniversary, I’d rather not discuss how he passed, but remember him as how I knew him when he was alive.
Chris invited me over to his parents’ house for dinner shortly after we became serious. The first time I met Uncle Claro, he introduced himself as “Chris’ older brother”. Of course, nerve wrecked at the time, I had to think twice about that joke. Chris had told me that his parents fell in love with me even before meeting me. He must have talked me up, but what solidified that truth was when Uncle Claro said, “Cindi, please help yourself to the food. We are family now” before we started eating. You probably think that comment scared me off and made me want to run out the front door, but it didn’t. It felt…true.
When people talk about Uncle Claro, there’s always one theme…how he’s such a generous person. He always thinks about others and tries his best to help people out. Not only that, he asks nothing in return. When Chris’ parents found out my mom might be pre-diabetic, they immediately gave her a blood sugar measuring device. And Uncle Claro made sure to call Chris and talk him through how to use it on the phone. When they found out I liked canned corned beef (yes, I know…it’s canned meat but so’s Spam and I love that too!) he made sure to buy a whole case of it when it was on sale at Rite Aid, where he was the store manager. There were countless things Uncle Claro did that will always remain unforgotten in my heart. For me, I was lucky enough to have him grace my life for a little over a year. I only wish I was as lucky as those people that have known him all his life.
Chris and I were able to tell Uncle Claro about our engagement before his passing and he was extremely happy. Although he won’t be here to see us walk down the aisle together come August, we both know that he will be watching over us in spirit. He walks alongside Chris every single day, and I think that is why we’ve been so fortunate in the last year. Things just fell into place for us, and it’s because Uncle Claro is there protecting us.