For Angilda Delacruz, 21, without her aunt and godmother Magnolia Pena, the upcoming holidays are the toughest part of the year.
“When we were little, we would always go to her house, and she would always have these baked cakes ready and chocolate lollipops in her fridge. We would always get in trouble for stealing them,” Delacruz said.
“The holidays were her thing. We always knew that out of everybody, we would always get the best presents from her. The first couple of years after this happened, we didn’t really celebrate the holidays because it wasn’t the same,” she said.
Although it took almost a decade, Delacruz said her family has gotten used to the loss, and has started celebrating the holidays again.
“It doesn’t feel like 10 years,” she said. “It feels weird. It feels like time stood still, yet it passed by so fast at the same time.”
The family also just welcomed a new addition, one-month-old Gavin, who would have been Pena’s first grandson.
“Every time that a big moment happens, I think about her not being there. She was the one we all expected to always be around,” she said. “I know that it seems like everybody says this, but she was the best person ever.”