Friday, January 22, 2016

The above picture was presented to Daniel Montes just days before his passing by his dear friend the Honorable Mayor of Brownsville, Tony Martinez.  This is a time for blessings and gratitude for the so many gifts and praises given to my late brother in law and not politics.
Before I say a few words I want to print the words sent to me last week by one of Brownsville's few well respected politicians.
"Daniel Montes left a mark that will last for generations to come.  There was so much to love about him.  From his infectious smile and love for life, to his flare for dancing.  He made those around him happy.  In an era of technology, Danny possessed a gift for masonry that could not be replicated by any machine.  Though he was small in stature, his contributions to Brownsville will stand forever tall.  He was one of a kind."
At about 2:15 p.m. Thursday, while dealing with the issues surrounding what I hope will be the sooner than later the passing of my suffering brother, I received a phone call from my nephew that my brother-in-law Danny was requesting I speak with him in private. I had to finish what I was doing to protect my brother before I could run to the hospital.
I was taken alone by an angelic nurse by the name of Sylvia.  I'm not sure she is real because she was so angelic in caring for my brother-in-law and my family, she was more than human.  To a person we embraced her for her love and compassion.
Danny was in Valley Baptist Medical ICU.  He had a full face mask for oxygen - by full I mean covering from one end of his face to the other.  The nurse could only remove the mask for a minute.  Some 7-8 times he made me promise I would go to his kids and tell them to withdraw all life support.  He was ready to go. 
I held his hand and told him I had already addressed the issue with the kids, they were fine, and it was time to ask permission to pull the plug.  I put my hand on his chest and told him to close his eyes, and go to Caroline who had passed in 2002, because she was standing on the dance floor by herself waiting for him.  I did ask that he go by way of my brother's nursing home and take him along so he too could be with our sister and at peace.  When I turned the nurse Silvia was crying.  That made me feel bad.  She was so angelic to Danny the entire day since 6 in the morning.  She stayed with him until he passed.
The nurse contacted the doctor with Danny's wishes, and the hospice care process began.  There was some delay because of confusion as to the rights of the patient.  Danny had to repeat his wishes to Sylvia again with the hospice nurse in the room.  The paperwork and all of the approval's took several hours.  We sat, cried and laughed.
At about 11:00 p.m. a nurse came out to the waiting area and called in all of the family.  It was myself, his eldest son, two daughters, two grandsons, and a niece and her husband.  He was passing.  They gave him a medicine which calmed him and put him in a daze before removing all life support.
We each spoke with him as he lay in his daze passing.  The angel Sylvia told us he passed a lot faster than she would normally see.  She said before they pulled the life support he told the staff he was ready and happy.
As he was passing, I told Danny to please go by way of my brother's nursing home, again, and take my brother along.  He is so suffering and I pray every day that God grant him the peace he has now granted Danny.  I told him Caroline was on the dance floor waiting for him.  Each of his children were allowed to say goodbye.  The nurse declared Danny as passed at 11:11 p.m.  He was 94, soon to be 95 on March 29, 2016.
I kept my promise.  When the hospice nurse said they could not agree to his request is when the doctor was called and the hospice nurse was told to verify the request whereupon Danny's request to withdraw all life support was granted.
When Danny gave me his directive he did it with a stern voice and confidence.  He knew what he wanted and he knew I would fight for him.  His children were all on board and knew I was just a vehicle to communicate the message they all wanted the answer to but did not want to ask.
Daniel Montes was the closest man I had to a father,  Mine died when I was 5.  I have been visiting Daniel and Caroline since 1976, when I moved to Texas.
I know for sure the funeral home will be Treviño's.   The cemetery will be Buena Vista.  The church will be St. Luke's.  Family will be flying in from all over the county so I have no idea as to a time table.
If you knew Danny and you want me to pass on a confidential message to the family just email me at
In his passing Danny granted me a peace.  I cannot explain it without breaking the peace, but it all seems so trivial now.  Danny and I were always good, the problem was with two third parties.  They were his friends and my opinion is of no consequence.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am sorry for your loss. Good to know some get to go on their own terms. Peace be with you and your family.