Some people are almost always in the shadows. One of them died Monday night.
I looked for photos of Nicolas to print for the family. I could find very few good ones of him, but I cropped one photo to get this picture which represents his spirit.
Nicolas was a gentle soul.
Nicolas was a hard-working husband and father.
Twice I have had groups come and watch while he and his sons and others made dulce – a sugar product made by boiling the juice of sugar cane. He showed people the process, invited them to participate, and made sure people had a chance to taste it.
Here’s a photo of Nicolas with Fr. Jon Seda from St. Thomas and two other visitors this past January – Joey and Tyler. The photo is cloudy because of the vapor from the boiling sugar cane.
I almost always saw him with a smile.
I don’t know how he was as a father, but his daughter and two sons are incredible people. I imagine he could be strict in a gentle way – but loving.
For all I could see, he was also a good husband. His wife, Gloria, is a leader in the community and in the church. I don’t think he felt threatened by a strong woman who was his wife. But Gloria is an extraordinary woman, who is also quite humble.
|Nicolas with Gloria, daughter, two sons, and son-in-law|
She is also a woman of faith. When I stopped by on Tuesday morning during the wake, she spoke of how her faith sustained her, despite the loss.
I will miss Nicolas when I visit Plan Grande – and I expect that I will miss his presence when I move there later this year.
But his family will miss him even more – his wife Gloria, his children, his grandson, and his brothers and sisters.
May God give them courage and comfort – and give Nicolas rest. I hope Nicolas gets to share some dulce with Jesus and Mary.