Emiliano Capiral Mendoza was born on July 22, 1925 in the Philippines. He was the eighth child of 13 children born to Telesfora and Casimiro Mendoza. Emiliano
had several nicknames, such as Emilio, Milio, and Mel. He always had a
cheerful disposition and was a gentleman through and through. He served
in the U.S. Navy from 1946-1966.
Mel and Rose were childhood neighbors who fell in love. They were
married on August 15th, 1957 and together for 56 years. They raised four
daughters in Oxnard, San Pedro and Wilmington, California. He has 8
granddaughters, 7 grandsons and 1 great grandson. After serving in
active duty for 20 years, he worked at the Naval Shipyard as a Warehouse
Supervisor for another 20 years, and retired in 1987.
Mel's hobbies included gardening, watching western movies and sports,
and keeping things organized. Because of his giving spirit he
participated in many charitable organizations throughout his life. Mel
was involved with the Knights of Columbus, Altar Server and the Legion
of Mary at St. Peter and Paul Church in Wilmington, Altar Server and
Eucharistic Minister here at Holy Family Parish, President of the
Valenzuela Association, USA 2000-2002and member of the Phil Am Club.
Mel has always acknowledged God in his life. His life changing
experience happened during WWII when he, his older and younger brother
were captured by the enemy. On the way to the cemetery where they were
to be killed, he shared how he recited several times his contrition to
the Lord. His older brother was first to get a bayonet thrust through
his chest, of which he pretended to be dead. His younger brother only 14
years old was not so fortunate. When it was Mel's turn to be killed, he
asked God, "Can this be my time God, let me know?" He worked at the
ropes binding his hands and got them loose. He began running in a zigzag
fashion to avoid being struck by oncoming fire. Mel has always
acknowledged God for his second opportunity at life. Likewise, his
children and grandchildren recognize that they would not be here had it
not been for God's grace.
Mel reassured his family a week before hid death that Jesus was his
Savior. Even the day before his death as family held his hand he was
asked, "Dad, squeeze my hand that you are trusting in Jesus?" To this he
responded with a hard squeeze.
Rose and all of his children are so
grateful to have had such a wonderful man in their lives. They thank you
for coming to give your respects to Mel. As we acknowledge we are
sinners and put our trust in the redeemer Jesus Christ, we can rest
assured we will see Mel again! God Bless you All!