Sharon Cuneta mourns death of her ‘favorite’ aunt Paz
MANILA, Philippines — Megastar Sharon Cuneta is mourning the death of one of her favorite aunts, Pacita “Paz” Gamboa Lapradez.
View this post on Instagram
One of my favorite Titas passed away in her sleep in Los Angeles the other afternoon. Second to my Mommy, who was the eldest of nine siblings, she took care of me & Kuya Chet often whenever our parents would go on vacation or were on something work-related. We were sent to either Tita Paz’s home in Nichols Air Base (her husband, who passed away only in his 50s when we were young, was a Lt. Col. in the Air Force) or Lolo and Lola’s house in White Plains (now Mama Helen & Daddy Sen. Tito’s). Kuya and I and Tita Paz’s first two of 3 children were the first 4 of many Gamboa apos. So of course we became best friends. Her 3rd, Jeffry, became so close to me that until this day he is like my little brother. A dream of a son. We always enjoyed our Nichols days because though they lived in a small apartment-compared to the big White Plains house-it was a home filled with us kids, lots of love & laughter. She cooked for us endlessly. And she was both mataray and malambing. I loved how she was. Until just a year ago I loved making sumbong to her because she would curse in Kapampangan, Tagalog & English & always threaten to murder whoever upset me! She was so funny. And she treated me like I was one of her own. She raised 3 great kids who absolutely adored her. Kuya James became a pilot in the Air Force before flying for a commercial airline with Kuya Chet, Ate Jo-Ann & I dreamed of becoming doctors together-now she is an OB-GYN married to a surgeon in California and I’m a singer & artista. Jeff is an Engineer who once worked for Boeing & is now owner and founder of Mita’s Kitchen Foods which is sold in groceries in the U.S. -all of them recipes of my Tita Paz. He took care of his Mommy until the very end, along with his loving wife Marian and & daughter Tessa. He is heartbroken. So am I, though not even half as much as Jeff and Ate Jo and Kuya James are. Tita Paz ko, thank you for loving me the way you did, like one of your own. Thank you for always making sure I was okay, that my children were okay. Thank you for loving us the way only a truly loving Mommy could. Visiting L.A. now will never be the same. How can we continue having fun on our dates to Gyu-Kaku orADVERTISEMENT
In an Instagram post on Wednesday, Cuneta said that Lapradez, who is a younger sister to the actress’ late mother Elaine, died in her sleep “the other afternoon” at her home in Los Angeles, California.
“Second to my Mommy, who was the eldest of nine siblings, she took care of me & Kuya Chet often whenever our parents would go on vacation or were on something work-related,” Cuneta said of her aunt.
Cuneta also shared how she became best friends with her aunt’s children, saying one of them is “like my little brother” until this day.
“She cooked for us endlessly. And she was both mataray (sharp) and malambing (loveable). I loved how she was,” the actress affectionately recalled of her Tita Paz.
“Tita Paz ko, thank you for loving me the way you did, like one of your own. Thank you for always making sure I was okay, that my children were okay. Thank you for loving us the way only a truly loving Mommy could,” she remembered.
View this post on Instagram
Pacita Gamboa Lapradez. My Tita Paz. I will never forget you. No wonder I threw up everything I ate the other day and could not understand why…I was plastered on my bed, so weak. Frankie, on the other hand, felt like she was on fire (strong and unstoppable) for two nights in a row (She has always been very sensitive in THAT sort of “spiritual “ way since she was a baby)…and then we found out you left us…I still cannot believe you are gone…I was just with you last year…Tita you’ve always been one of my top 3 favorite Titas and now you’re with Mommy na…Oh you know what to tell her about my sentiments…And my Daddy too…would you tell him please to ask Papa Jesus to allow him to hug me everyday when I need him the most? You four with Tito Bert have made us 5 big kids official orphans…I’m still dealing with being one. I know it’ll take Kuya Dedem, Ate Jo, and Depy a loooong time to be able to accept being orphans now too…But you have raised smart, strong, God-fearing children who all are so in love with you! If only one of my kids turned out like Ate or Jeff I wouldn’t ask for anything else…I hope my son becomes just like Depy..I love you very much, Tita ko…Thank you from the bottom of my heart for showing me love…you have been like another Mother to me…
In another Instagram post on Thursday, Cuneta said that she will never forget her beloved aunt.
“Tita you’ve always been one of my top 3 favorite Titas and now you’re with Mommy na…Oh you know what to tell her about my sentiments…And my Daddy too…would you tell him please to ask Papa Jesus to allow him to hug me everyday when I need him the most?” she said.
Cuneta is the daughter of former beauty queen and singer Elaine Gamboa, and former Pasay City Mayor Pablo Cuneta.
Elaine, who is Paz’s sister, died in 2014, aged 79.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.