This coming Sunday is Mother’s Day and rather than go into any business, or expose anyone, or blast someone, or do anything else, I need to show my respect to a few of the ladies that are somehow part of my life, and even if they are all too young to be my mother, some of them are real mothers already to someone else. Not exactly in any particular order, but they are all part of my life or at least part of this organization existence at one time or another. First, my good friend Parker Philpot, who does not have any children, but has been like a mother to this newspaper in many ways. Parker is always ready, willing and able to step in and give us a needed hand. And boy, are we ever in need of a hand! And while we are on the Parker Philpot issue I would like to give special thanks for her input and contribution to the editorial staff during a Cliven Bundy issue by giving the Black perspective. Thank you, Parker, with all my heart. What would the Las Vegas Tribune be without Maramis Choufani? Nowhere! And every week after the newspaper is finished, I say thank you, Maramis. Sometimes I call her and my dear old friend Don (he is not a mother) who spends the whole night giving the final touches to our product, like a father (we will remember him on Father’s Day) watching over a sick toddler to be sure nothing goes wrong… Sometimes I don’t call them to say thank you, but just say it out loud while I am getting ready for another day ahead of me. No wonder Bob Beckett refers to Maramis as “friend of the Universe” during their Friday radio show. And I send my greetings to Patricia Baucum, a mother of two beautiful young ladies, who has become another adopted mother of the Las Vegas Tribune for her spiritual encouragement and support of this newspaper. Patricia is always very much willing to help and is always concerned about my health and making sure that I am doing okay. And Melodie Nelson, another unbelievable friend of Las Vegas Tribune, who we admire and respect very much for her dedication and her fight for her son’s welfare, regardless of how many obstacles she finds in her way. Every Sunday Melodie visits with her son and nothing interrupts that visit, and many afternoons she visits our office to on check how we are doing and to bring me my favorite chocolate candy bars (Milky Way and Three Musketeers) to keep me going and on track. Victoria Giampa is another mother of two, who also has adopted the Las Vegas Tribune as one of her own and is always keeping her eyes open for stories that can be of interest to the readers of the newspaper and the community as a whole. Victoria is always making sure that my supply of saltine crackers, which go with my V8 juice, doesn’t get too low. Angie Barrientos, the wife of my friend Miguel Barrientos, is an extraordinary mother for doing what she has done for their children and for her dedication to the entire family. Angie and Miguel visited me in the hospital every night when I got sick and I never forgot that gesture of friendship. And Cat Patton, a great mother who backs her son unconditionally on every move he makes, regardless of whether he is right or wrong. And Marlene Monteolivo, who I have always considered a great mother for her dedication to educate and raise her children all by herself with a lot of sacrifice and long hours of hard work. North Las Vegas Judge Natalie Tyrrell and her judicial executive assistant, Susana Reyes, are both great mothers, dedicated to their families — Susana even suffering the loss of one of her children. I consider it an honor knowing them both. My sister Perly, even if we do not see each other too often and even if we don’t see eye to eye or get along, I appreciate the way she has dedicated so much time taking care of our sick brother, being not only like a mother to him but also like a nurse and sometimes even like a private doctor. I may not get a chance too often to express my gratitude, but I do feel it and believe some day we can overlook whatever differences we may have. Last, but not least, the love of my life since I was a young teenager, my little (not in size) Chinese sweetheart, Vilma, mother of two great guys that I never had the pleasure of meeting, but I am sure they are very proud of their wonderful mother. If I would have been able to appreciate what I had back then maybe these two guys could have been my own sons, the children that I never had, and now am too old to even think about. To all of them and to every mother in the world and all other mothers that I know and that I don’t want to name to not leave anyone out, I offer my most sincere and deepest respect and a Happy Mother’s Day. My name is Rolando Larraz, and as always, I approved this column. Rolando Larraz is Editor in Chief of the Las Vegas Tribune. His column appears weekly in this newspaper. To contact Rolando Larraz, email him at: Rlarraz@lasvegastribune.com or at (702) 699-8111.
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