October 29 To November 4 Edition
Special Special Feature: Will They Still Love Us When They Die?
Pinoy Artist of The Week: Mark Alain Echem
Will They Still Love Us When They Die?
Anthony Vanaria felt guilty about his father’s death. He was a medical emergency instructor for the New York City Fire Dept., but he can’t even save his own father from a fatal heart attack. But that same night, he had a dream so vivid he’d remember it throughout his life. In the kitchen, his father and his uncle, who died the year before, were playing cards. “It’s really nice,” his father said when Anthony asked how he was. “You’ll find out someday.” Then his father and his uncle went inside a door that wasn’t there and Anthony woke up.
Wishful thinking? But shortly, when his mother told him she can’t find the insurance policy, his father appeared again in his dream. It’s in a strongbox in the attic, said the fantasy. The next day, Anthony found it, just where his father said it would be.
Six years later, Anthony was facing the most agonizing of human dilemmas: his mother had been in a vegetative state for months, and it was up to him to take away the life support. Painfully, he made the decision and he let her go. “I walked around with the worst grief I could ever imagine,” he recalls. “I felt like I couldn’t save my father’s life and that I had killed my mother.”
His guilt drove him to desperation. Finally, he couldn’t stand it any longer, and he went to the medium Johnny Edward. As he and his wife walked up to the front door, a car pulled out of the driveway with the license tag 222 – the same number her mother, born February 22, kept showing her after she died. A feeling of being “overjoyed” swept over him as they entered. “I felt like I was attending a reunion.”
Anthony’s parents came through Johnny, assuring him that they continue to love him, joking about the hidden tattoo he got in their memory, and sending their love to their grandson Anthony III. The baby is due for months yet, and they haven’t told anybody that if it’s a boy, they’d name him in honor of Anthony’s father.
“She says she knows you did all you could for her,” relays Johnny, and Anthony started to cry. “Her brain was gone and she thanks you for what you did; it was the right thing.”
An unanswered question was tugging at Anthony. During his wedding reception, as he led his mother for the traditional mom-son dance, expecting ‘Mr. Wonderful,’ the song she chose, the DJ instead played ‘Wind Beneath My Wings’ by Bette Midler – the favorite song of his parents he became upset and later scolded the DJ who said, “A man came up to me and said that’s the song you wanted.” They searched for the man but there was no trace of him; the DJ described the mystery requester, and it fit Anthony’s father perfectly.
Now Anthony asked his father, through Johnny, if that was him. Yes, came the answer. But, he insisted, is it that particular song? But that was all his father said about it. Later, in the car, Anthony felt a sense of comfort and his parents’ loving presence. As he started to drive, he turned on the radio, what came on was ‘Wind Beneath My Wings.’
Anthony and his wife started to cry, and he had to pull over. “I looked up in the sky,” he recalls, “and thanked God and my parents for the beautiful gift they gave me.”
I’m sharing stories from one of the most life-changing books I ever had the blessing to come across – One Last Time: A Psychic Medium Speaks To Those Who Have Loved and Lost (Berkley Books, NY) – the spiritual odyssey of John “Johnny” Edward, a devout Catholic, host of TV’s Crossing Over and the world’s most acclaimed spirit medium. This New York Times bestseller gave me assurance in the wisdom of the Higher Power that guides us to our true destiny, the courage to let go and move on, and the inexplicable peace of knowing that my loved ones who have died still love me, still watches over me, because they are still here – because they have never left me.
In 1994, a woman named June Castonguay had a reading with Johnny, and who came through was a complete stranger that would change the lives of many people that fateful summer. Johnny got the names Tony and Christopher and an image of a car accident. Something clicked,then June remembered there had been an accident in their neighborhood last week. Her sons Tony and Christopher went to the scene, where a teenager who was riding his bike got hit by a car and died. Now the boy, Andrew, was asking, almost pleading, for June to write his parents, giving signs so they’d know it’s him, to let them know he’s okay and happy in a wonderful place. June wanted to help but felt very awkward. “I didn’t even know these people,” she protested. “I don’t know what to tell them!” Johnny strongly urged her to do it, not knowing that Andrew will be playing an even bigger role in his life.
June began her letter by telling Andrew’s parents everything, sympathizing with their loss. “If you feel comforted in any way that it might be true then I know it was worth the risk. Please, please know this is in no way was meant to hurt anyone. But if I did not write this letter I would never know if I did the right or not …”
Andrew Miracolo was handsome and popular among his friends in Long Island and comes from a super close family. On July 15, his parents were devastated by his sudden death. Andrew had just turned 16, how could God take him away? “My baby, my baby…!” his mother was hysterical. When Andrew died, she would later tell Johnny, “Nobody could talk, nobody could stand up, nobody could eat.” She felt like “I lost my son, I lost my husband, I lost my other son.”
“He wouldn’t want us to go crazy like this,” she cried to her husband during the funeral. “If we could, he’d write us a letter so we’d know he’s okay.”
Then one day, two weeks after Andrew died, she was thunderstruck as she read June’s letter. “I got my letter!” she screamed. “I got my letter!”
From Your Mother
One sweet day, Johnny was driving when a young voice clearly said, “For my mom and dad and from your mother.” Johnny was stunned. Who was that? Then he saw a sticker in the truck ahead of him that reads “Andrew”
At that moment, he know he would hear a song about the Other Side, the beautiful place where are there are no more goodbyes. Then Jordan Hill’s ‘Remember Me This Way,’ the theme form Casper, came on. Johnny just sat at the roadside, transfixed by the song, “knowing that it said everything that needed to be said about love between both worlds – knowing that love lasts forever and our loved ones are forever in our hearts.”
“And I’ll be right behind your shoulders watching you, I’ll be standing by your side in all you do, and I won’t ever leave, as long as you believe, you just believe…”
Pinoy Artist of The Week