For the first time ever, we skipped last month’s blog post due to the tragic death of Manny’s beloved grandfather on March 28th, 2023.  Tracy’s father sadly passed away in Africa, and it has taken much effort and many arduous weeks to return his body to Texas where he was recently cremated. Goong-Goong, as Manny lovingly called him, was one of Manny’s greatest admirers and championed not only his education throughout his entire life, but also generously contributed to COTA for Manny. He looked forward to hearing every update about Manny’s heart condition and all his latest hobbies and happenings. Goong-Goong believed Manny could do anything he set his mind to and especially loved hearing him read his latest essays for school and play new pieces on the piano, often closing his eyes to relish every creatively composed word or note and then raining precise and poignant praise upon his youngest grandchild as Manny’s grandmother added her words of encouragement, too.


Thus, we close this month with a fitting tribute from Manny:

Laughing is an essential part of life. It’s what often lightens the heavy burden of the troubles of life; it’s such a pure manifestation of joy. My grandfather was a man who always spread joy by making others laugh. For example, he would share his potentially jarring FBI stories in a very palatable and playful manner that always caused raucous laughter among me and my siblings. His trademark “Goong-Goong specialty” that I always anticipated was what he called “meat-meat” in which he would hoist me up and repeatedly jab his chin into my belly in an exceedingly ticklish way. Predictably, it invariably resulted in squeals of excitement and laughter. Goong-Goong’s ability to spread joy to others was only one of his many shining traits. I am sorrowful that he has passed, but I will never forget the great happiness he brought me.

Dad/Goong-Goong, we love and miss you every single day, and you will forever be in our hearts.

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.  2 Peter 3:9

Thank you for your care and support of our family as we walk through this difficult time,

The Lees

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