December 8, 1948 ~ May 26, 2006
Ellen Martinez Villanueva was born on December 8, 1948, in Santa Cruz, Manila Philippines and passed away in her house at Wilmington, CA., Friday, May 26, 2006 at 4:45 in the morning at the age of 57 years, 5 months and 18 days. She was the 2nd to the youngest daughter of Elias & Elvira Villanueva.
Her survivors include 2 brothers and 6 sisters, namely: Norma Enriquez (Philippines); Jose Carrillo, Jr. of Hayward, CA; Evelina Mape of Carson, CA; Iluminada Pascual (Philippines); Josefina Cruz of Carson, CA; Rogelio Carrillo (Philippines); Erlinda Caagbay (Philippines); Emelda Tumminia of Torrance, CA. and step-mother Pilar Tanwangco Villanueva (Philippines). Besides her immediate family, she is survived by her boyfriend Darryl Gracyk, and a large number of other relatives and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents and 2 brothers: brother Emerson Villanueva at the age of 6 on Dec. 4, 1953; mother died in May 1983; brother Edgardo Villanueva in 2002; and her beloved father died last year on April 11, 2005.
She began her education in 1956 and finished her secondary school at Teodora Alonzo High School in Manila, Philippines.
At the age of 14, she accepted Christ and was baptized and became a member in Manila Central Seventh-day Adventist Church in the Philippines.
In 1970, she graduated from Far Eastern University, Philippines with a B.S. degree in Education. Following her graduation, she was employed as a secretary for the Laloma Police Station in Quezon City and later for the Mayorâ€™s office.
In April 10, 1979 she came to America to join her parents and sister, Lina, in Carson, CA. She was married in 1981 but their union ended in divorce in 1991.
To name a few, she worked for the Pacific Telephone Company in 1982-1985; US Dept. of Defense Human Resources Dept. in 1985-1990; later for the Dept. of Veterans Affairs in the year 1990-1993.
During that same year 1993, she nearly died of a tragic incident. She survived leaving everything behind her and lived closer to the Lord for a new cast of life. She served the Lord through singing and giving personal testimonies to many churches.
Ellen was a member of Hawthorne Seventh-Day Adventist Church from around year 2000 until her death. She went on a Fiji Mission Trip in year 2003 for about 2 to 3 weeks with some of her Home Church members. She was also involved in feeding the homeless. She is a woman of unique sensitive character, industrious and friendly. Her friends were many.
In the last 5 years, she has been a persistent student, been very active in many activities but her love of music exceeded all. She continued pursuing her dream and enrolled at El Comino College taking Associate degree in Nursing. Once again, she had to temporarily quit schooling because of the loss of her father. Her father was her best friend and confidant.
Shortly before her death, she finished her first CD album entitled: â€œI Give You Jesusâ€ Her parting was so fast that she was unable to promote her newly released CD. She found out about her diagnosis the following day after she picked up her 1, 000 copies of CDs. April 25, 2006 she was told she had cancer. On April 27, 2006 her Oncologist told her that she had incurable cancer. She grew seriously ill everyday of each week. Her health deteriorated so tremendously fast that she only lived a total of 32 days and went to sleep in the Lord
I cannot think youâ€™re not alive somewhere.
I think of you just as I did before.
My mind and heart have not yet lost a friend
Even though my senses are bereft,
For you will remain the witness of my soul.
We give thanks for the life of an extraordinary woman, the irreplaceable, unique, complex Ellen whose laughter and company shall never be extinguished from our minds.
~Violy T. Cuvin
To contact the family please e-mail at FarEastPearl@aol.com
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