I know it's a little late for Mother's Day but it's never too late to celebrate it.
A good friend of mine wrote a book. This is a story based on real facts which happened on January 20, 2001. Amadeo Hernandez narrates in order the agony and his desperation to find his Mother who disappeared from a Las Vegas Casino, The Nevada Landing. It is more like a diary than a book because after his mother was found seven month and eleven days later, Amadeo recaptures his steps in order to write this book.
His parents came to visit the United States from El Salvador for the New Year Holiday. It was their first time in this country. Amadeo was very proud to have them over and it was a dream come true for his parents, to visit their sons and grand-sons.
Amadeo's parents, Francisco and Bernardina Hernandez arrived at LAX on December 21, 2000. He took them everywhere that he could think of. His older brother(we'll call him Julio) decided that he wanted to take his parents to Las Vegas on a tour bus excursion. So about thirty days later a trip of pleasure was going to turn into a nightmare.
Around 4:15 p.m. Bernardina disappeared without leaving any trace. She had never visited a place like Las Vegas, and when she saw large crowds of people along with all the activities that Vegas has to offer she evidently got confused and decided to walk out of the casino. From that moment Julio initiated an extensive search for his mother. He called the police but according to their rules they only investigate after 24 hours.
At the time Amadeo was at work when his brother called and gave him the horrible news. He was very angry and his desperation started in the search for his mother, Bernardina.
He started to look in shelters, churches, hospitals, and the Red Cross, etc. The search spread all of Nevada and California and also Tijuana, and El Salvador. They made flyers and passed it out everywhere. The story made the news in the Latin communities. Soon everybody was aware of the search of Bernardina.
Amadeo made endless calls to the politicians of the state of California and also to the Ambassador of El Salvador. He told me that these politicians when in times of campaigning they look for the support of the citizens, but when the support is needed from them, they don't care!
Amadeo wants to send his gratitude for his friends and relatives who were giving him the moral and economic support for the search of his mother. He says it was hard for him to imaging his mother lost in a strange country without knowing the English language, and without money or documents. The purpose of this book is to remind people who neither respect nor value their parents especially when they're older or handicap. The goal is to make the reader change their conduct towards their own parents. It will make everybody understand why we should appreciate our elders when they're with us, for when they are gone it's too late to show our appreciation and affection.
When Amadeo was searching in shelters he was aware how people were just left there when they are not wanted and his mother could have been in that situation.
Amadeo was working at the Beverly Hills Plaza Hotel and one of the guests was aware of the search and person offered no help with all the money they have. His co-workers offered support and funding so he can continue with his search. So what does that tell you about people in high places?
The body of Bernardina Hernandez was found about a mile away from the casino that she disappeared from. Apparently, when Bernardina left the casino she was disoriented and the climate was very cold that reached forty degrees. She died of a heart attack.
Amadeo started a foundation in behalf of his mother called 'Bernardina Foundation.' On May 10, 2008 was the first event for the Bernardina Foundation to celebrate Mother's Day. It was held at 2845 West 7th Street, Los Angeles, Ca. 90005. It was a sellout and there will be more in the future, perhaps on Mother's Day.
The book is written in Spanish and it is currently being translated in English so you folks out there will enjoy a good inspirational read. I wouldn't be surprise if it turns out to be a best-seller or on Oprah's book of the month club. I have a rough cut of the English translation because Amadeo Hernandez, president of the Bernardina Foundation asked me to write the screen play for the book.
My personal advice to give you folks out there... Be good to your Mother and tell her you love her, often! Enjoy the company of an elderly person, you're going to learn something.