My sister Emily Irene Valencia was born May 19, 1954 in Roswell, New Mexico. She has been married since 1973 and they have four children: Gary, born July 19, 1974; Samantha, born July 6, 1975; Phillip, born June 12, 1980 and Justine, born April 14, 1998.
Emily had known Gary since elementary school when he lived next door for six months. They knew each other in junior high school and high school, when everything became a competition. They both ran for President of the Library Club which raised money for library supplies, books and the graduation party. He was nominated as President, but Emily had Gary impeached as President because, as she puts it “he wanted the title without the work”. After a while the competition became a game. At first she wasn’t interested in dating him, because he seemed to show off a lot, but eventually she started to see his vulnerability in the way he smiled and acted towards her. They began dating; going to the movies, out to the park to talk, and even to the library to finish their homework together. After they graduated they continued to date, then he asked my father permission to take Emily to the Rose Parade one year, where they became engaged.
My sister, Emily Irene Valencia, married Gary Uhas in Hacienda Heights, California on February 17, 1973. Then he left for tech school at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas in 1973.
Once Gary was stationed at Beale Air Force Base in Northern California, Emily was in contact with lots of working couples with young children, and saw their need for inexpensive, safe childcare for their children. In 1973, after her first child, Gary Jr. was born she began to babysit for a lady who made ceramic items like: cookie jars, white vases, Raggedy Ann and Andy statues, piggy banks and such. She took care of the lady’s children in exchange for ceramics, this eventually evolved into a daycare business which lasted for over 20 years.
There are always minor medical emergencies when taking care of children but in several instances Emily’s cool thinking saved the life of one of her daycare children. One happened while they were living at Beale Air Force Base while feeding the children their afternoon snack. Suddenly one of the children was choking on a piece of meat and Emily performed the Heimlich maneuver, clearing the air passage and allowing the child to begin to breathe again. She then called his parents and they had them checked out at the hospital. He was fine and suffered no severe injuries because of her quick action.
When they were stationed at McCord Air Force Base in Washington (1980-1983), one of the children at a daycare center across the street from where they lived was undergoing respiratory distress from his asthma. Emily managed to calm the child down and he started breathing again, due to the CPR training that she’d received from the Red Cross.
While Gary was attending the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado (1983-1987), Emily and Gary decided to invite single airman over for family gatherings. As Emily tells it “when we arrived at the Air Force Academy in 1983 it was so exciting. The feeling in the air was that there was so much to be involved in, we volunteered for a program to “adopt” two cadets whose families lived too far away for them to visit. We sponsored two cadets so that the young men would have a place to go for homemade meals, hang out with the family and learn our traditions.
Our family became very close to these young men who were working so hard to become officers. Even though they were studying to become officers and we were in enlisted, it didn’t matter to them. We invited our cadets to all our holiday gatherings, but our home was also a place for them to get away on the weekends, to study, relax and play with the kids. We went places together on the weekends and before long we had “adopted” five cadets, two of whom we are still in contact with us to this day. One went on to become a pilot for Air Force One and Two, and the other young man became a criminal law attorney.”
Once, while stationed in Nebraska (1987-1990) she was working for a Taco Bell and a young girl who was cleaning up had inhaled bleach fumes, and her eyes were burning. Emily followed first-aid procedures and flushed the girl’s eyes out with water. They called 911 and the paramedics checked her out and said that she was fine.
At one time she also volunteered with Blue Cross (1987) to work in a hospital, bringing meals to military wives who were sick while their husbands were deployed, and they had no other help. She also helped women who had lost their homes, watching their children for free while the women looked for work.
Emily has volunteered to teach CCD for first, second, third, fifth and sixth graders from 1983-1987 (Colorado) and 2002-2006 (California). As a Eucharistic minister while living in Colorado, she distributed the Holy Communion, volunteered to clean the church and organized youth activities. -673
Emily has no website but she was nominated by her sister Diane Tegarden of FireWalker Publications who is the Author of: “How to Escape a Bad Marriage-A Self Help Divorce Book for Women”, “Light Through Shuttered Window- A Compendium of my Poetry”, “Anti-Vigilante and The Rips in Time” a sci-fi thriller and “Budgeting on a Dime- 10 Steps to Financial Independence” are available at: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and FireWalker Publications.