The Loss of Aldo Salato
Why are we so often reminded the good die young?
I lost a good friend last weekend
99.9 percent of people reading this small article about my friend, Aldo Salato, will never have heard of him. He never became a celebrity nor a millionaire; he was not a top sportsman, although he loved to dive and spear-fish in the bays around La Paz, Baja California Sur. Aldo married back in the late 1990's and had three children over the next few year with his wife, Xochitl. Aldo was not a demonstrative person, but he was a solid husband and father and a good provider. Unfortunately, being a quiet and good citizen does not prevent you being seemingly singled-out in the universe for ill fortune, and 'Xochi died about 4 years ago from cancer.
Aldo kept on being a good father and kept his grief inside most of the time. In time, he met another local girl, I don't know her, but she seemed to make Aldo and the kids happy which was all that mattered.
Aldo tried living in Australia, working for his sister-in-law - Leti's - family, but returned to Mexico and La Paz after a couple of years, I believe. As I have been away from La Paz myself since 2003, some of the details are a bit sketchy.
Aldo will be remembered by many of his friends for his unfailing good nature and sunny smile and unhesitating generosity to anyone who came into his sphere of influence. He always made you feel special, as if you were the only one he was thinking of. Taking a coffee with Aldo in the La Paz' Callejon could be considered the highlight of a visitor's day. Not that the conversation was earth-shattering; Aldo was just nice to be around and gave off vibrations which made his companion feel good, too.
I was away when Xochi passed and so sad I could not be there to offer a few all too trite words of comfort for my friend. The only details I have of his death is that he had a heart attack while diving. He was a very skilled diver who would stay in for hours and venturing far from the shore, often alone. I can't think that he would have suffered and his passing would be merciful. If anyone would be able to transcend the boundaries of physical form and find Xochi again in that vast space we know so little about, it would be Aldo. And if there is a Supreme Being I am sure Aldo and Xochi can count on his benevolence.
It will be many a moon before I forget Aldo Salato and my time in La Paz as his friend.
My condolences to Aldo's children, his elderly father, his sister-in-law, Leti, his parent's-in-law, his partner Rosy (I think is her name) and to his many friends. Special condolences to my friend, Oliver Siemiginowski, and his dad (Leti's husband) Ron. They were particularly close to Aldo.
Robert (Bob) Challen
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