"My tribute to Sara Roxana Diaz Aulestia" by James A. Aulestia

It is interesting how events are linked. A few days ago, I had a vivid recollection of some
of the happy moments I spent with Sara Roxana Diaz Guerrero, my mother. I say "my
mother," because of my love, gratitude and admiration for her. As I recalled those
moments, I shared with my lovely wife my feelings and my memories of her. I also
wondered if her time on earth was about over. Here comes the link, last night, I received
the answer via my brother Victor, he left a message, informing us that my mother had
received the last rites and that her tired body was shutting down... He also shared her
words to her maid, stating that her mother and older sister Judith were there ready to
take her to the next realm of existence.
I met her, just a few days before her wedding to my father on October 3, 1951. My
Brother Ivan and I joined my father and new mother shortly after in the City of Cuenca.
My parents rented a nice house in the said city and shortly after my mother decorated it
in a very pleasing and welcoming manner. I liked her immediately as she was kind a
very loving. Having a home with loving parents meant to me, just a boy of 7, security
and stability. It helped to heal past wounds and allowed healthy development. As time
passed, my gratitude grew exponentially. I often thought what it would be to inherit two
active children... My mother, treated us equally and made sure that Ivan and I had
everything we needed and the best of education.
One thing, I will always be grateful for was how we were so smoothly integrated to her
side of the family.... It was a fine and gentle people that immediately accepted us and
treated us as one of them. Part of the benefits were a marvelous grand father, many
uncles and aunts and numerous cousins... All of them were just great. My mother's
father was Desiderio Diaz Bayas, ( I was not fortunate to meet her mother, Angela
Guerrero as she had passed away, but I know she was very special because my mother
and her family were special). We spend many fascinating summers with him at his
enormous cattle ranch and farm just below the majestic Chimborazo mountain. He
certainly was one of my favorite role models, he knew and taught us the value of hard
work and the gift of being generous.
The early years spent with my mother and father were indeed most valuable in my
development. When the time came to be separated from them, as they went to Brazil,
we did not fall apart, but graciously accepted our new environment and circumstances.
One thing, we had in our favor, was the support of our wonderful aunt Rachel, her
husband Rodrigo and outstanding children... All of then certainly had a tremendous
influence in our lives... We grew up with the children as siblings and certainly develop a
love and bond that will span the eternities.

Our summer in Rio de Janeiro was memorable for the many learning activities she
provided and because I grew up closer to her as we had most interesting and enlighten
conversations. After that, time passed quickly. Upon they return to Quito, our home life
was restored and moved on. One thing, I remember well, was her quiet ability to comfort
without words. As we showed signs of stress, she would put her hand on our shoulders
lightly and concerns became manageable. The last time, I was with my parents was
about a month prior to my Father's passing. I was traveling from Loja to Guayaquil via
Quito. As I landed in Quito, it was late and the last plane had left. Thus, I decided to stay
in a hotel. As I dialed the hotel number, I had this thought, that I should visit my parents.
I followed the prompting and I went to their home. The reception was warm and in
minutes we pick up where we left off like we have been apart just a few hours. It was a
quality that I have always admired in our family. It was a great visit and exchange of
family information... My father, told me a great deal about his youth, something, he had
never done before. Thanks to my mother's ability to set opportunities for expressing
feelings, I was able to to thank my father for his his great example in those principles
that made him great. She mentioned his unbending integrity and I took the clue and told
him how much his example has guided my life and actions. He died shortly after and
because of her, I have no regrets.

My failure, which I deeply regret is that I went back to my old ways and did not maintain
contact with her.... To day, I am writing so I can share with the family my love, gratitude
and admiration for a very special child of God that changed our lives and totally
influenced what we have become. In my circle of influence, many know her because, I
mentioned her and my life experiences often.... In fact there are over 3000 young
missionaries that know her and my father. The only thing left to do is to thank my God
for her life and for what she gave my father, myself and brothers, selfless love. She is
now in His care and being loved by my father and so many great relatives.