Mother’s Day is a time to celebrate our moms, but also to think about what they mean to us, what makes them uniquely ours. Here are some thoughts from folks who live or work in Liberty City. We hope they’ll inspire you to reflect on your own mothers, perhaps in a way you haven’t before. Happy Mother’s Day.
Willie “Slim” Jackson, 71, retired, Vietnam veteran (picture above)
“My mom is a unique person, she is 90 years old. We celebrated her 90th birthday last week on South Beach and I thought I would never see her reach 90 because she’s a cancer survivor. She had breast cancer when she was 30 ….
“My mother is originally from Georgia, she went through segregation and the civil rights movement ….
“When we were kids, she always told my siblings and me to get an education ….
“She would pack our lunch for school and guess what she would make? It was biscuits; she would take her finger and put a hole in it and fill it up with syrup, cane syrup. I wish I was having one right now, you can’t find biscuits like that anymore.”
Emiliano Padilla, 49, mechanic
“My mother died two years ago in Cuba. I was not able to go see her before she passed away ….
“When I remember her I feel sorrow but also happiness,” said Padilla. She was the author of my days when in pain or in health. Today, I can only say, rest in peace beloved mother ….
“My mother was my friend, my confident. We used to play the guitar together and sing along the tunes ….
“For me, my mother represented on earth, what God represents in heaven.”
Shirley Sajousse, 30, social worker at the Tacolcy Center
“She helped me finish school. I was a single mom and she was the one who took care of my kids ….
“My mom had to take, from Miramar to Miami, three buses to come to my house because she doesn’t drive. She wanted to make sure she was here on time before I had to leave to go to school ….
“When my siblings and I were little she used to lay out our clothes for us …. Every morning she would make breakfast, and it would always be the same breakfast, a Haitian meal called legume and sauce poise. Once we smelled that, we already knew she was cooking …. “My mother is loving and strong. Throughout everything she showed us love, showed me how to love. My father wasn’t around and she took all that weight on herself “She was strong enough to carry the weight on herself. My kids, myself, my brothers, her household and mine, too.”
Dennis Morgan Jackson II, 44, commander, Miami Police Dept., North District
“My mom is the person who keeps the peace in the family and makes sure that everyone is getting along ….
“My mom always talked to me about being real careful about what you say and treating people the right way. Once you say certain things it’s kind of hard to take it back ….
“My mom always said, “Son, if there is something you don’t ever want anyone to know, then just don’t tell anybody ….
“She would wake me up and make sure I had something to eat. While I was eating, she would go over my vocabulary words and after dinner she would sit with me for 30 minutes and allow me to read to her out loud ….
“My mother made sure everything was done, and done right. She is the model of a kind person, a peaceful person, a person who is willing to sacrifice.”