Dr Paul A. Evangelista
“Destiny is not a matter of chance. It’s a matter of choice. It’s not a thing to be waited for. It’s a thing to be achieved.”
We honor people in our lives to immortalize them. Come to the WOD ready to kill it. Give it all you got and help me honor my dad properly. This is a way I made a point to celebrate their lives. Keeping their positive memory is how we celebrate life. Their spirits do not die as long as we keep them alive in our hearts. Today is no exception. It’s the moments that takes our breathe away is what makes this life amazing. Always do good. Be good. Strive to inspire others and never put anyone down. Your legacy is the only thing you can leave that matters. Live the life you life.
To the father of Culion
Paul Evangelista was the youngest of 5. Raised in a small island named Culion by a nurse and a pastor. They were good God fearing Christians who instilled structure, great core values, family, and strive to find your purpose. My dad was an explorer, overachiever, but what they learned from a very young age a giver. He was kind at heart and loved everyone he met. He grew up in Culion during war time. There was a story about my dad spared by a Japanese general who was killing young children. He found my dad while everyone was hiding and he remembered his own family. He then protected the home and my dad’s family after. OHANA. After that Culion was in chaos. He was raised to overlook the ugliness and find beauty in all things. He went to an prestigious medical school in Philippines and graduated with the highest honors at a very young age. He could have been anywhere in the world after. But he returned home to take over what Culion was in the beginning. It was the last remaining colony for Leprosy. My grandparents were the missionaries who helped welcome thousands of sick patients collected by US NAVY all around Philippines to drop them off to my small island. My dad grew up during the time where they segregation all the island knew. Leprosy patients where isolated and my dad empathized for them. My dad took on the responsibility after that and made it his life mission to finish the job. From about 2,000 or more patience when he took over down to 10 when he decided to retire. He traveled the world to many locations to spread the word about Culion and Philippines. Met many doctors worldwide and try to learn as much as he could for the bigger purpose. He pretty much put all he got in Culion and the Philippines. Not just in the mission but created new opportunities for everyone. After retiring he ran for government and became vice mayor. He fought to change Culion from a Colony to a municipality. His goal was to changed what people saw Culion as to this renewed island which he called “PARADISE REBORN”. He wanted to show the world that anything can be beautified with love and patience. And boy he did. My dad also wanted to continue his father’s work to help spread Christianity to a Catholic dominant island. He help balanced the island and built many churches who he funded. He helped introduced religion to a lot of the Aboriginals around the islands. He also traveled to Manila and parts of the world to speak about these changes and missions. I met thousands of people who each had at least 30mins or more worth of stories about my dad. Can you imagine hours and hours of stories. Was he human? People would say my dad would be exhausted and tired but yet help cure, operate on people everywhere and yet ask for nothing. Simply just for food and a place to nap. A simple but complex soul. This charming good looking man was great at public speaking, could sing his heart out, and I heard dance and can cha cha all night. He was the star athlete of the basket team in Culion. Was a fast quick point guard. He can swim across the ocean for a mile or two against waves, he was also a handy man (or at least tried hahaha), he played several instruments which made me to believe why I got into music in Junior High School. My dad was also stylish but never bought clothes and recycled the same shirts until he died. My dad help paved the way for many generations and his legend echoes to eternity. On his last months on Earth he was already battling cancer and diabetes without complaining. On November 2013 Super Storm Haiyan slammed through Culion and destroyed everything. See link for my Ohana Project relief fun to understand what he did (please read): https://jaggedswords.wordpress.com/category/ohana-project/
He saw devastation and instead of laying down he stood up. He showed courage and resilience to help others around him when he had nothing left. They told me he would go out in missions with his own supplies and help towns. Then would work for FREE in the hospital and took on surgeries and did this 7 days a week 19hr shifts at times. Until the very end he fought for his island. Even when he saw his prized farm destroyed. Flattened and reversed back to its original condition when he first got it. Millions of dollars – years of hard work gone. But God had a reason. He battled the pain of liver cancer and didnt tell people he was bleeding internally until he had to be rushed and air transported to Manila. He came back to Culion and still managed to help until his final breath. I can keep writing about him and the day would not be enough. The stories and the physical proof of his works are evident. To a man who was the father of many lands people. You will be missed. Until the end he fought to stay courageous and ask God to give him strength to face a hard life. Daily my hopes is for Culion to never forget you. I will do my best to make you proud daily.
FOOT PRINTS IN THE SAND
One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord. Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.
In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand. Sometimes there were two sets of footprints, other times there was one only.
This bothered me because I noticed that during the low periods of my life, when I was suffering from anguish, sorrow or def
eat, I could see only one set of footprints, so I said to the Lord,
“You promised me Lord,
that if I followed you, you would walk with me always. But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life there has only been one set of footprints in the sand. Why, when I needed you most, have you not been there for me?”
The Lord replied, “The years when you have seen only one set of footprints, my child, is when I carried you.”
To my dad
On September 11, 1978 I met him as he held me in operating room and saw my mom smiling as my dad held me high and danced with me. From there we have been battle buddies. He took me everywhere and anywhere he can show me off to. I was always tailing him in my missions and adventures. Morning exercise was fun. When he wakes up he would stretch and turn to me and say “M – let’s go and embrace the day.” We then would pray together and I always read the “Foot Prints” poem in front of our bed after. Then off we go to sweep the living room and then outside we go at 5am to water the plants (he had orchids and roses) and sweep the steps (50 of them daily). We had people who worked for us – alone I had 3 nannies to watch me. But my dad always said that cleaning wasnt a chore. It’s his time for himself that he loved. He told me always find what you love and let no excuse stop you from doing it. Then breakfast. He would have me on his lap and make up stories about the food. His smile was brighter than the sun every morning. After he would put me on his back and sing silly songs that made no sense and with no real words. He would make funny faces daily to make me smile. He at times would take me to work and I would sit and meet a lot of the leprosy patients. People were astonished that I wasn’t disgusted by them. I didn’t see their ugly faces or their rotting flesh. All I saw was love and hope. He would come home during lunch daily just to spend time with me and to nap (hahaha). He would come home at night and play with me. He was there constantly. That’s all I remember. The stomach farty sounds and silly songs and hugs. In some days when he is not working we would ride to the farm and check on the crops. My dad had those old school aluminum jeeps and each we hit a rock my butt would hurt and he would grab me closer to comfort me (no seat belts back then) or he would take me on his motorcycle. Each time we traveled farmers, town people from several areas would hear us coming and stop us and ask him for help or donation or a ride. My dad never said NO. So many people said hi to us. It was amazing – but I thought nothing of it. My dad was awesome so I guess others also thought that. We went to our farm and plant some seeds (ie trees and some seeds), check on the pond, and his animals. He would take me on these adventures within our farm and told me that this is ours. He was so proud. I would chase the chicks and then get chased by the hen. Then off to the beach property to check on the house and more projects to make the huge property better. I didn’t realize he was doing it to beautify the community not just our own. These same trees then protected this area from hurricanes. On the weekend we would do the same thing. Sundays was fun because he would be on the podium – singing – praising God – passionately screaming to rejoice. He was my table eating partner. We loved eating with our hands. I copied him as we ate everything on site. We loved eating crabs, shrimp, and especially daiing (dried fish – salted). After that we sometimes take naps or look outside our balcony speaking in our own special language. I remember listening to him perform with his instruments and sang songs to me. Kenny Rogers would always be on and his voice was so angelic. He was so talented. He was a great dancer as well. As he carried me all through the house and sway and dip me all over. He was so gentle but you can feel his grip. I guess all surgeons had to be that way – gentle but tough. I was always in trouble and always caused chaos and rucus but he forgave me. Never yelled at me. Except once when I fell at age 2years in a canal deep enough to kill anyone. It was a 20ft drop. I fell while trying to retrieve my cousins plastic gun. My fell on a small tree that pierced through my chin and forced me to bite half of my tongue off. Someone carried me to the hospital where my dad was doing a surgery. I think he stopped what he was doing rushed to me and cleaned me up and then spanked me after the surgery. He held me tight after 3 spanks to my butt but they weren’t painful. He held me after and cried. Cried and cried and said
“I love you. You are my prize possession. I never want anything to hurt you.”
I can never forget that day. I knew he would never leave my side and stop protecting me. He hasn’t stop ever since then. On his last days alive I spoke to him and I told him to hold on. I wanted him to meet Tristan. And he smiled on the other side of that phone and said “Yes – I will. I can’t wait to hold him. I can’t wait to show you guys the farm. I will wait for you guys.” On Sunday Feb 23, 2014 at 3:48am – I had a marathon the day he died. It was Sunday and my mom called in tears and I knew. I woke up that day and I saw his face before I got that call. I ran that race because like my dad I hate starting something and never finishing it. I am a man of integrity and I hold value to these things. I cried for 26 miles and ran my fastest race. My heart shattered to a million pieces but family help me piece them back better and stronger. That’s when things changed again for me.
My fondest memories never left my heart and I held on to them even when it hurt to replay them. As I write this it brings tremendous pain and tears. But as I look in front of me is my son playing. Smiling. Showing me his Lego creations. I did it right even when days I feel like I am failing my family by not buying everything they deserve. Family matters. Family is always first. I will hold on to these memories forever. I love you dad. Always and forever. Teaching me to smile even when it hurts. And to never quit. Thank you for being my hero. Because of you I learned to be my own. Because of you I learned to be kind.
Carve your name on hearts, not tombstones. A legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you.
Until Valhalla – I miss you and love you dad.
DOK POL as RX’d
Timer: 2min x 1rd
Running in place
Bicycle sit ups
2 Push press
23 Air squats
**1 mile on bike choose two separate rounds
10 Push ups
41 Floor knee tucks
73 Leg lifts
73 butterfly sit ups
DOK POL – REGRESSED
31 Air Squats
73 reverse crunches