Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Last Request of Gerry Del Rio Cortes

“ … even in our sleep pain that cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God. “ wrote the Greek tragedian Aeschylus.

“It’s almost that time” was the title of a joint e-mail sent by Bridget & Gerry Del Rio Cortes on Saturday, April 12th. On the afternoon of Sunday, April 13th, Gerry left this life, leaving his wife, their families and friends to cope with the loss of someone so good and so young.

Gerry was 44 when he entered the kingdom of heaven. He and his wife, if this life were fair, should have spent the last two years looking to raise a family. But Gerry was stricken with cancer. So they looked for hospitals instead.

I met the couple when we were all volunteers for the Diamond Bar Relay for Life. Bridget put her heart and soul into the event and the organization. To anyone who would listen, she spoke glowingly of the American Cancer Society (ACS) and all they did to help them live despite Gerry’s grave illness. When a position came open, ACS gladly hired Bridget.

In this last letter, Bridget and Gerry wrote together they acknowledged the tragedy that had overtaken them. And while they still hoped for a miracle to spend more time together in this life, in their request for prayers they asked not for healing, but for relief of pain. For his body and for her heart.

In this letter the couple made a joint statement that I believe they would both want shared. This is the last request they made together as husband and wife.

“Lastly, we would like to ask a favor of you. Please take some time out of your life to battle cancer by participating in a Relay For Life event either in your city or ours. It is one day out of your life to fight back against cancer. Visit http://www.relayforlife.org/relay/ to find one near you. All of the funds raised go to the American Cancer Society to help with their research, education, advocacy, and service. Gerry and I have used their FREE services these last two years ranging from talking to a live trained person who gave us information at 2:00 am to getting 4 nights free in a hotel in San Francisco during his chemo treatments. So can other cancer patients and their families. To find out more call 1(800) ACS-2345 or go to http//www.cancer.org/docroot/home/index.asp"

For anyone interested in helping the Diamond Bar Relay for Life, this event has a specific site at

Until we meet again, rest in peace, dear Gerry.

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Fan


Lydia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Gerry you were an inspiration to us all just seeing you fight the battle of Cancer these past 2 years. It was a pleasure knowing you and Bridget and Natasha, Leonard, and I will never forget your love, committment and strength. You will be missed by many.

Love You Always,
Patricia Barron, Leonard Lujan & Natasha Ludwig

Anonymous said...

Thank you Jerry for behing there for us, thanks so much Brigdet for being there for Jerry all the time. Love you both. And thanks for making this page to him Lydia.

Norma Cortez

Lydia said...

You are so very welcome. He was a blessing while he was here.