Ernesto Ramos was born in 1942, in the midst of World War 2. Though he never fought in any wars nor wore a uniform, he succeeded in the biggest battle....Life. He did it with honor and distinction. Until his final day, the heart of a lion.
On November 8th, Justina Davila and Eugenio Ramos welcomed Ernesto into this world. Born in Vega Alta, Puerto Rico, he was surrounded by 10 loving brothers and sisters. In those days, you worked. Ernesto worked in construction at the age of 12. Ernesto arrived in New York City at the age of 17. In 1963, at the age of 20, Ernesto had his first son, Ernesto Jr, who was born in Brooklyn, NY. Shortly thereafter, Ernesto Jr returned to Puerto Rico and Ernesto always flew out to visit and spend time with him.
In 1965, Yolanda met Ernesto on Sunday, November 19, on 95th St. and Broadway, at a family friend's house. It was love at first sight. They were married on May 7, 1966. They welcomed Irving, Nestor, and Melvin into the world. The proudest daddy you could have ever met. The amazing journey with Yolanda and their 3 boys began.
Yolanda expresses: We had a sincere and real love. Mi viejo would say, "Mi Negra, tu eres mi vida, no puedo vivir sin ti." My Black Beauty, you are my life, I can't live without you. We will continue with the same love, my first love, my only love. We will be together one day again. I am grateful to my In-laws and Puerto Rico for giving me a great man, an amazing son, a wonderful husband, and a devoted father. My life will never be the same without you. I will love you until I close my eyes and join you in eternal peace. Te quiero Mi Viejo.
Irving expresses: As a boy growing up, sometimes, you spend the year wishing your parents would get off your back, only to realize they're the only ones who ever really had your back. Something I have learned years later.
Our father was always strick but human. Part of growing up in a different era. He allowed me to enjoy my childhood but would jump in if he saw something that wasn't right. He always taught me and my two brothers that your word was your bond. Dad was a man of character. Dad was old school. Dad taught lessons. Do not promise anything you cannot fulfill.
My fondest memories of dad was teaching me how to catch and play baseball and football. Dad wasn't really into basketball though. He always made the effort to give me exactly what I needed. Never missing a little league game , teaching me how to fish on the Hudson River. Dad was always there for every school project. I remember my project on types of rocks. Dad actually kept one of them. There wasn't a prouder moment for me as a son. I'm going to miss you Viejo! We were the same. Peas in a pod. I love you always.
Nestor expresses: My dad, my dad was a loving father, a great husband, a great provider. He was always there for his family whether that be his immediate family or extended family, friends, friends of friends.
My fondest memory of my dad growing up was on the weekends, he would always take my brother and I, at the time it was only Irving and myself, to play baseball. He never missed our games even if he had to work that Saturday, he would normally take off just to be at our games. He would chug up the Hill and we would play at the park behind George Washington high school and he would drag my mother along and he would practice with us. When I got older, I would take him out with me and my friends to hang out, play billiards, listen to music..
As the years went on, we enjoyed ourselves more by smoking cigars and having some drinks, going on vacation, and talking about everything. My dad liked his cigars but he would like to smoke his Dutch Masters and I would tell him that life was too short to smoke bad cigars, so he would take my Cubans or my Monticristo Dominican cigars. I can honestly say that my dad was one of my best friends besides being the best father I could have asked for. Dad, I love you and know that every time I light a cigar, have a drink of Whiskey or listen to one of the old salsa songs, I will be thinking of you. Until we meet again, mi Viejo.. Te quiero de gratis, I LOVE YOU FREE..
Melvin expresses: My father was my hero. When I was little, my dad greeted me with a loud and boisterous "My Son!" There wasn't a better feeling in the world to know that your father was proud of you. When I spent time in the hospital, at the age of 4, he never left my side and our unbreakable bond was set. My fondest memory growing up was having to navigate my over protective dad. I have my wonderful two older brothers to thank for that, I suspect. Being the baby of the bunch, I have to acknowledge I was Simba (The Lion King) to dad. Everyone knew it. Irving and Nestor would make fun of how dad did not want me to break a fingernail but that's part of being the youngest. Mom and dad would take me to Van Cortlandt Park, in the Bronx for what seemed like every birthday party. That was our spot, always with bat and ball in hand.
In more recent times, we shared a love for Police shows. Dad was proud of my law enforcement career and always asked when I would become Director. That always put a smile on my face. Dad even got mom watching NCIS, Criminal Minds, Law and Order, and Blue Bloods. Dad was still over protective, like telling me to put on a jacket because it was cold, when it was 70 degrees. In his final days, I told him, it's "Your Son!" and you will be ok. And now, 39 years after he was with me in the hospital, I took care of him in the hospital. A son never does forget. Life came full cycle. Dad took the battle to Cancer. He made us all proud. Love you Papi, Your Son will see you later.