Monday, January 09, 2006

Hello everyone, DEATH HAS BEEN SWALLOWED UP IN VICTORY!

On Saturday, January 7, 2006, a funeral celebration was held for Charles near his home town. Approximately four hundred and fifty friends and family members attended. Many have described the ceremony as a true celebration of Charles' going home to be with the Lord. Among the family and friends in attendance were several very special people which Charles befriended while in the hospital in Houston. Without a doubt, these special friendships which Charles forged with his faith and encouragement in God will continue to flourish with those of us still here.

Several scriptures that were read at the ceremony truly depict what we had prayed as soon as Charles went home to be with our Lord. 1 Corinthians 15:54-55 says, O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR VICTORY? O DEATH, WHERE IS YOUR STING?

One of Charles' favorite bible verses was in Psalms 118:24. It reads, This is the day that the Lord has made let us rejoice and be glad in it. Basically, that was Charles' motto. Regardless of the circumstances and the impending fight ahead, he was glad and would rejoice in knowing that God's hand was at work, despite any bad report or facing death, this is what he would rejoice in!

NOW SOME MORE AWESOME NEWS...

We were thrilled to learn that an extremely talented Houston Chronicle sports reporter, John Lopez, wrote an article which came out on the Chronicles' Sunday January 8, 2006 edition. The article tells how Louisville Cardinals' All-American defensive end, Elvis Dumervil, was in Houston in December as one of three finalists eligible to receive the prestigious Lombardi award. Just days before the event, a few incredible things happened.

Charles had been selected to attend the ceremony and had already been fitted for a tuxedo. A limousine was to pick him up at the house and drive him to the event. He was to sit with other cancer patients also attending the event. Charles was thrilled and excited about attending the Lombardi awards ceremony. Well, as had often happened in the past, plans changed. Charles became ill and ended up back in the hospital just a few days before the event.

The day All-American defensive end Elvis Dumervil visited with children at Houston's Texas Children's Hospital, he met Charles. I don't know exactly what they shared with each other, but I do know that Charles was excited and was looking forward to attending the ceremony and watching Mr. Dumervil on TV playing football and keeping up with any future draft prospects. Apparently they had a profound effect on each other. I believe it was God, (he has a tendency to do that)!

For more on the story please go to Houston Chronicle's web site at chron.com and search for Elvis Dumervil. This will take you to the article titled, Elvis leaves the building...changed. I think that you will truly be amazed at how the two bonded the day there paths crossed. I still believe Charles left a lasting legacy for Christ and we are only seeing the beginning of that legacy.

Charles was a remarkable young man and would almost always best express his inner most thoughts and feelings by writing. We continue to find poems and letters dedicated to certain people and numerous other writings about his life and the trials he faced, and of his AMAZING faith in God. I think we have enough gathered to write a book that can help encourage many others who are going through a similar situation in life.

While facing the storm of his life, Charles was always ready to encourage and help others in the hospital even during times when most of us would turn and shut out the world when the fight became unbearable. You see, that is when Charles became the strongest because he understood that at our weakest, God is made stronger. And God made him stronger in return.

We had often been told that Charles was a remarkable kid and that he would grow and touch the lives of many for God. That is exactly what he is doing! Charles made many friends who attended bible study groups in the hospital with him and now know that he is finally healed!

It was that incredibly contagious personality that people loved about him. He was always positive and humble before God. He truly understood what it was to live under God's complete control. Placing his entire life (on earth and in heaven) in God's hands enabled him to live and fight the way he did. And I thank God that he had a profound effect on me and my family as well.

As mentioned before, Charles left us all many, many poems to remember him by. On December 5, 2005, Charles wrote his final poem. He titled it Roadway to heaven. I am sharing the poem with you all and believe it will touch your life as it has ours.

Roadway to heaven

The road for me has not yet ended.
With steep hills,
And even steeper drops,
Winding roads,
And no pit stops.

Trying to be a nice passenger,
I sometimes wonder if the driver is asleep.
But then He comforts me,
And told me He shall neither slumber nor sleep.

Without warning,
The weather changes,
Rain heavily pours down upon our party,
But the guests still remain gleeful,
For they are grateful for the party…

Fog blankets my home in an instant.
I can’t see tomorrow,
But I have no fear.
I have Jesus, and He is light.
I walk with Him and all darkness must flee.

But one thing is for sure,
No matter what the circumstance…
This is the day that the Lord has made
We will rejoice and be glad in it.

-Charles Garcia
Monday, December 5, 2005


To all of the wonderful people praying for us out there, THANK YOU and keep up the great work! Keep writing those encouraging comments and please share this blogspot with as many family and friends as you can. Remember, Charles could not have imagined the magnitude of how his little old blogspot would help and encourage others. He was simply living for God and was obedient to Him.

More to come...

10 Comments:

Blogger been there said...

Valerie, my sweet, precious friend -

I just read on chron.com about the impact Charles had on Elvis. What an awesome testimony to the world when one life, emptied for his Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, ripples like a pebble when dropped in a pond - touching lives for His glory! What a precious gift Charles continues to be to those "out there!"

With much love and prayers -

Pamela

8:09 PM, January 09, 2006  
Anonymous Robin said...

Valerie, how amazing Charles' funeral must have been!!! You knew that losing his earthly body would not stop him from affecting people's lives - what a testament to your wonderful son. The article was so touching, I made tons of copies for the clinic and have e-mailed the site to everyone on my e-mail list. I consider myself so lucky to have known Charles. The first time I saw him in clinic - he was reading the bible - this is the way I will always remember him...

6:42 PM, January 10, 2006  
Anonymous MArcia said...

Valerie,
Carol Herron at TCH just forwarded me the Chronicle article about Charles. I had not known that he'd passed away. He was such a wonderful young man. I'm honored that I got to watch him write and express his thoughts. What an inspiration he was! Both you and Charles impressed me the moment I met you. Thank you for your example. I wish that Charles could have met my newest daughter, born one week before he died. Her name Carrie means "loved" and she is...so is Charles, forever and ever. Marcia (the writer from TCH)

7:46 AM, January 11, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Everyone here at The Sunshine Kids Foundation would like to express our sincere thanks to the Garcia family for allowing us to be a part of Charles's life. He was and will remain to be such an inspiration to all. During our camp in San Marcos in June 2005 the other teens battling cancer looked up to him and gained strength from his courage and wisdom. We will never forget how he touched all our lives. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
Sunshine Kids
Jennifer Wisler

8:10 AM, January 12, 2006  
Anonymous Michelle said...

Valerie
I just read the article in the Monitor. I had no idea your precious Charles had left you. I'm so sorry. I broke down in tears myself. I want you to know that you truly made an impact in my life. I remember meeting you in the clinic at the beginning of Charles journey. You were holding another moms baby helping her. And then our paths would cross at the various gas stations along the way to Houston and of course at TCH. You were always helping other moms cope. I even remember all the smoothies you would make for Charles and share with all of us. I admired your strengh and courage and determination many times and would share my stories with other mothers as well. When I saw you last getting coffee at TCH when Emily was there for scans I could see the fear in your eyes and I knew what probably only other mothers of cancer patients know. But as I can see from this blog and the article you were a rock for Charles as I'm sure you were for your husband and other children. Please if I can do anything for your family or if you would like to grab some coffee I'm here. My heart goes out to you and your family. I only wish I knew earlier of Charles passing. My prayers are with you.

All my love
Michelle
Emily's mom from Mission

7:49 AM, January 14, 2006  
Anonymous Cecilia Galvan said...

Mr.& Mrs. Garcia
I just read the article on the newspaper this morning. And your family are in my prayers. Charles had such faith and that is wonderful. I wish I would have known of this blog sooner and I could have kept up with Charles updates. His stories are so inspirational and he was a strong young man.

Cecilia Galvan & Family (960)

11:58 AM, January 14, 2006  
Blogger Daily Texican said...

Wow. An amazing story. An amazing son. Charles makes all of us from el Valle proud.

4:51 PM, January 14, 2006  
Anonymous your uncle said...

I am sorry that I just found out of this webb site, maybe if I had known about it sooner I would have written some thing, but its to late now. I wish I had known you, to tell you things about your grandfather and I used to do when we were young and still not married. So many things I could have talked to you about, if only I would have known you, May God Have a special place in heaven just for you. God Bless you Carlos

7:08 AM, January 15, 2006  
Anonymous Jim Seitz said...

Hi Valerie, This is Jim, whose 17-year old son Matt has osteosarcoma and was in the TCH room next to Charles last autumn. We used to say hi in the the hall, recognized each other as Christians, and you prayed with Matt and me once in Matt's room.

My wife, Laura, Matt and I give to you, your husband, and to Charles our prayers and Christian love. Yes, Charles left a lasting legacy indeed, perhaps the strongest witness to God's love I've ever seen in a teen.

Charles' poem that was posted on the TCH 9th floor family room refrigerator in early December was one of the most striking, victorious things I've ever read. I've visited this blog several times for inspiration and will do so again. It's a living devotional.

You raised such a fine young man. I wish we could have known all of you better. I wish you God's peace as you grieve.

Oh. Matt is doing very well. He has four in-patient chemos to go. The prognosis looks good for now. We have been so blessed. I can't explain it, but we have felt the prayers of hundreds of good people make a difference, mainly in knowing that no matter what happens, God loves Matt and us, and He is with us.

I saved the Elvis Dumervil column. If you'd like me to mail it to you, have someone at TCH, either in the 14th floor oncology clinic or the 9th floor hospital oncology floor, give your address to us.

God bless Charles, and God bless you! Thank you for all the love that went into this blog. I will share it with others.

Jim Seitz

7:29 PM, February 08, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

more than 10 years

3:00 PM, May 10, 2015  

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