A Letter to My Son – July 9, 2019

Today is July 9, 2019, it’s my birthday. Year 2 without you here on this day. You were always so excited to be the first one to tell me Happy Birthday Momma. I can still hear your raspy loud voice. Then bragging to your sisters how you were the first to tell me, I literally can hear the three of you arguing about it. Makes me smile. It’ll never be the same again, nothing in life is the same because you’re not here Joseph. Tonight, my birthday gift from you is just being here in your room, taking all of you into my soul. It’s what makes me feel good, I can feel your presence as I’m surrounded by all your things. If I had to choose one gift that God would grant me for the rest of my life, it would be You coming home back in my arms. Holding me tight with your arms, kissing my forehead telling me, I Love You Ma! I Love You so much!

Im in your room, staring at everything that surrounds me. I’m staring at all your things; your clothes, your hats on the wall, your shoes, your skateboard, your desk and chair, your cologne, your dresser with shoe boxes on top, it’s all here …as if you’re coming back. Sometimes, I think in the deep back of my mind I tell myself you’re eventually coming home. Even though in my reality I know you’re not. I guess my brain still cannot fully process what has happened. I don’t know if it ever will my Son.

I see the picture of me you taped to the side of your nightstand, it’s by your bed. I’m thinking back trying to determine when you did that? You never told me, I wish you would have told me. At this moment, my heart feels warm thinking how you looked at your Mom every night before going to sleep and when you woke up. I wish I would have known, but it’s too late to ask you now.

Your favorite pic

I remember the night you were hammering nails on the walls in your room, it was late and I came downstairs to see what you were doing. I knocked on your door, you opened it and looked surprised I was still awake. I looked behind you and noticed your walls, you said to me, “I’m sorry Ma, I didn’t mean to wake you.” Those two words “I’m sorry” could win me over every time, “I’m sorry” was worth a million bucks! I’m looking at your footprints on the wall behind me, lol your dirty footprints! I remember your feet touching the wall as you would lay backwards on your bed and your feet up against the wall. It was simply a comfortable spot for you, now I stare at your wall and close my eyes trying to think back to those days and my heart starts to beat a little bit faster. That’s my trigger to stop thinking too hard, when my heart feels panic..it’s like my brain is protecting me, it’s telling me to stop. That’s about as far as I can go.

They’re still on your wall – but how long do I keep these here? It hurts so much.
How long do I keep these hanging in your closet?😭

I close my eyes and remember when you would sit in here, your bedroom was your very own domain. I never really spent much time in here because you would stop me at the door. Hours and hours you would just be in here with your own thoughts, listening to your music or watching movies on your Mac. Never did I imagine that one day you wouldn’t be here, and now I’m in your room staring at everything wondering what went thru your head? Memories and things are all I have left of you, because you’re gone. And, I know you’re never coming back.

Each day without you seems like eternity. Your absence is heavy, always. And, it still continues to shatter my heart. Some days I feel as if all the air has been sucked out of my body and i can barely breathe. Other days, I laugh thinking of all the stories you would tell me that typically took forever for you to hit the punchline, but I listened attentively and the end was always your best because everything you did or said was your best. It was either really funny or it was surprising, or just downright shocking. It’s who you are, you made everything better.

You left too soon my Son, way too soon. We talked about a plan, I don’t understand what happened. I have so many questions that I’ll never have an answer. This is still too much to take in most of the time and I still can’t believe I’m never going to hear your voice again. It’s only been 1 year, how do I live the next 5, 10, or 15 without you? Sometimes, this is just too hard. Every day I wake up thinking of you and I hate the nighttime, it’s the worst. I try to stay busy, but you’re always there in my head. This emotional rollercoaster is very exhausting to the human mind, but I’m trying son, I promise you I’ll keep trying. I know my heart is still beating, which tells me you’re still shining bright through me. Please continue to find ways to communicate with me so I can feel your air.

We will forever be a team♥️My Love is Forever, Your Momma

Joseph Anthony Suarez – 27

Before I share my story about the sudden tragic loss of our son, Joseph Anthony Suarez (Joe), I thought it would be a good idea to introduce him and share a few words of love from his family and friends.

Joe’s journey in life was far more purposeful than he could have ever recognized.  He gave a new meaning to the phrase “living in the moment.”  For 27 years we were beyond blessed to have him in our life; Joe made a difference in the world and to every life he touched.  His personality was incredibly funny, loving, genuine, he absolutely loved celebrations of any kind, he brought laughter and moments of warm joy to any occasion.  He had many extraordinary qualities/characteristics; far too many to try to write down, but one of his greatest was that smile!  His smile was contagious, it was a beaming light that illuminated his presence in every way.  On your worst day, he could make you feel happy just by talking to him.  Joe had that “something special” about him, one of his friends referred his personality to the word, “vibe.”  He just had it, all of it, and he shared that vibe with everyone who knew him.  He was one of the most selfless human beings you would ever meet; he never judged anyone and was always that person rooting for the underdog.  He had a way of seeing the good in people, no matter what bad they had done. Forgiveness, it was another strong characteristic; he forgave and forgot, he didn’t like to prolong an issue and was over it by the end of day.  If for whatever reason you got mad at Joe, forget about staying mad at him it just didn’t happen.  All he had to do was smile at you and suddenly whatever it was that caused you to be angry, well it would be long forgotten and he could have you laughing in seconds.  Joe absolutely loved being around a lot of people; the larger the crowd the better!  He was confident (but never conceited or cocky …just funny about it), smart, trusting, he loved sports.  He enjoyed football, golf, baseball, basketball, rugby, & his love for music was huge!  He gave his heart and soul to music of all genres (primarily loved hiphop/r&b, & “wedding music” aka Marvin Gaye, Commodores, etc.)   He enjoyed watching movies and could quote every word from “Zoolander” or one of many “Seinfeld” episodes; it was often you could hear him laughing across the room as he watched and rewatched his favorites.  He loved his family, his friends, and the simple things in life.  Joe lived each day “in the moment.”  He was a Brother, Uncle, Grandson, Godson, Nephew, Cousin, Best Friend, Friend, Coworker, he was so many things to so many people; but first and foremost he was “Our Son” and we shared him with the world.  A few family photos below, there’s that smile!

Goodness, I could sit here all day and night writing about his remarkable personality and the impact he made in his 27 years of life; but instead, I’m going to share a few quotes from people who wrote to me or posted comments on his social media pages.   We all deeply feel his absence in our world of  the living; everything is different now, its like the world suddenly got quiet.  However, I am 100% convinced that heaven definitely got much louder!

Enjoy getting to know our Joe.  He just had the “it factor”, so different from everyone and unique in his own way.  His memories and life legacy will live forever in our hearts.

From: Brian Burrell
Hi Elaine,

It’s incredibly difficult for me to put into words the impact that Joe had on me. He was an amazing person, friend, and someone who I always looked up to. Some of my best memories are with Joe and he’ll always have a special place in my heart.  When I talk about Joe now I find myself talking less about the fun times and more about the way he would make you feel. Joe loved everyone and everyone loved Joe. You could legit walk into a party and know no-one but Joe, and he’d make you instantly feel at home. He just had a way about him that made him that’s impossible to replicate and so difficult to put into words. He was the most welcoming and friendly person to everyone and comfortable in any setting.   He’d always greet me with his huge smile and his tagline of the month (wasssup blood, suhhh dude, sup my G). IDK It was just Joe.

Joseph Anthony Suarez was born on August 31, 1990 in Bakersfield, California.  He was our first-born child and only son. His arrival into this world was just as spectacular as it was when he left us; an entire room filled up with people who loved him endlessly.  We waited 5 years before we started our family, then along came our first child, our son. Joe changed our life in ways we didn’t know could be different; he made the sun shine brighter, the stars glowed more, the moon got bigger, the sounds of life they simply became more clear and definitely louder.  He gave us so much joy, we decided to have more children and three years later we gave birth to our beautiful daughter Allie, and four years after, then gave birth to another beautiful daughter, Juliana. He absolutely adored and loved his younger sisters,  they worshipped their big brother as well.   He was their best friend and the three of them had a strong sibling love that will last a lifetime; no matter if he is physically or spiritually here with us.  Every day was an “I love you” day.  It truly is a beautiful site to see and hear when your children speak the words , “I love you Sis or I love you Brother.”  I soon came to learn, Joe would say “I love you” to his close friends too, and now I hear him thru every one of his friends when they say, “I love you Momma Suarez.”

James and Joe

From: James Diaz

May 28th is a day that will sit deep in the hearts of hundreds of people. It’s very difficult to put Joe into a few short memories. Joe was a vibe. He was able to change the atmosphere of a room.  Since the first day I met Joe he looked out for me. The first time I met Joe was at a BHS football game when I was in the 8th grade and he was a freshman. We both had long hair and after we were introduced he started to call me his brother. That same year I shadowed at BHS and when I was on campus Joe immediately came up and hung out with me. It sounds corny as hell to say but Joe made me feel really cool that day.Three days before Joe passed my mother in Law saw Joe. She had never met him before. She described him as so happy and full of life. She said he had a distinct laugh and that he kept saying how he introduced Juliana and myself together. Juliana and I didn’t know how we met. But Joe reminded us that it was all because of him.




Everyday is hard without you but we don’t have no other choice but to keep living. Sometimes it don’t even feel like your really gone it just feels like your away and we just can’t talk to you. But then when I really stop and think about it and really realize that your gone it’s still to this day the hardest thing to believe and accept. I sit in your room and just look at your pictures we have of you all over and think to myself how much I miss you and how long it’s gonna be until I see you again and I just hate it because all I wanna do is talk to you and hug you. I really try to stay strong and happy for you brother because you never liked seeing me sad but a part of me will never be the same anymore because a part of my family is gone. I love you to no end💙

Joseph Anthony, you are missed by so many but mostly by me, your Meh, your Pops, your lil sis Allie & Juliana, and your beautiful niece Ella.  She points to your picture every time we ask her, “where’s Uncle Joe?” and she points directly to your picture and gives you a kiss.  We will forever keep your memory in her heart and soul.

Allie Suarez is with Joseph Anthony Suarez.

June 28