Saturday, November 13, 2010
BON VOYAGE, ERNIE
At 74 Ernie Cordero says all he has a lot of time on his hands.
He’s going home for good next week to spend time with friends and relatives, many of whom he’s not seen since he flew to America in 1957.
Cordero is well known in the Fil-Am community of Metro DC.
The Philippine American Foundation for Charities (PAFC) threw him a “pasasalamat” brunch this morning in Vienna, Virginia.
He came to the United States on a college scholarship and graduated with a Radio & TV Communications degree from the American University.
But he never got to practice this degree because he got sidetracked into the construction industry. He worked as a self-employed contractor for the next three decades.
He has either led or joined Ilocano, Pampangueno, Tagalog, Zambales and about half a dozen other Fil-Am organizations here (he actually traces his roots to Pasuquin, Ilocos Norte).
Cordero has been divorced since 1991. He was going back home “for some rest and reproduction,” he joked.
On a serious note, he explained that he’s been going back to the Philippines at least once a year for the past several years.
“Everytime I go home, I fall in a love with the country again,” he averred.
He observes that the Philippines “is a land of disasters and calamities” so she needs all the help she can get.
“I am really touched by the children, seeing how they struggle from day to day,” he said.
Living off his pension, Cordero said he will continue what he’s been doing here – doing his share helping organizations that help the Philippines.
He added he might act as a conduit for Metro DC-based organizations like the PAFC that have year-round projects to help Filipinos back home.
So, bon voyage Ernie and may you find more meaning in your new life back home.
(P.S. Cordero promised to visit in May and June next year, to help out as he's always done for the Fil-Am Ilocano association beauty pageant and celebration of Philippine Independence Day in the US capital)