‘Cherish every moment with your family’–LJM

12:03 AM February 03, 2016

I met Letty Jimenez Magsanoc for the first time 10 years ago to discuss the publication of a column series in the Inquirer. I was working for a private hospital at the time, and we wanted to highlight the struggles of Filipino patients. In our next meetings, which often started at 10 p.m., LJM said it was important for the column to communicate a message of hope and highlight each patient’s experience in overcoming challenges and hardships.

When I moved to another healthcare company several years later, the column series was discontinued. But I kept in touch with LJM. Whenever I read a well-written Inquirer editorial, I would text her to praise the op-ed piece and ask who had written it; she would text back that it was a team effort.


My last communication with LJM was in 2014, when she helped me correct a news article. It was an ordeal for me because the news article came out when I was on sabbatical leave with my children and had limited Internet access. LJM assured me that she would address the issue upon her return to work the next day, Monday, and told me not to worry.

“Focus on what is truly important in life. Cherish every moment with your family,” LJM told me.


I am no stranger to the pain of losing a loved one; my beloved eldest son passed away two years ago. And yet losing LJM still struck me hard. Difficult as it may seem, I choose to celebrate her passing, comforted by the thought that she has fought the good fight, lived a good life, and is now in the tight embrace of our Creator. Thank you, LJM, for teaching me transcendental leadership and family-work life integration. Thank you for your faith, courage, wisdom, commitment to truth and justice, and your endearing humility.

When I first learned of her passing, I cringed because I realized that I would not be able to pay her my respects at her wake—I was on a scheduled leave to spend time with my children and music community. Yet it was LJM herself who comforted me, as I recalled her advice to “cherish every moment” with my children.

As Saint Jose Maria Escriva aptly put it, “Omnia in bonum. All things work together for the good of those who love God.” Godspeed, LJM.

—CHRISTINE FAJARDO, [email protected]

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