- 74 years old
- Date of birth: Nov 27, 1939
- Place of birth:
- Date of passing: Dec 29, 2013
- Place of passing:
Walnut Creek, California, United States
|Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.|
This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, Constance Ong, 74, born on November 27, 1939 and passed away on December 29, 2013. We will remember her forever.
Constance Uy Ong was a beloved daughter, mother, and grandmother.
She was born in the Cebu province of the Philippines on November 27, 1939 and grew up in Manila. As the eldest of nine siblings, Connie was driven to help with her family’s struggles. After graduating from Hope Christian High School, she worked in secretarial jobs to help take care of her family.
At the age of 22, Connie married the late Anthony Ong and was the proud mother of four children. Raising children in a time of uncertainty in the Philippines wasn’t what she wanted for her future. In 1979, she set out for the United States to establish a life for her family. While it was difficult to be away from her children, she would often say it was the best decision she ever made. Through shear determination, Connie landed an entry-level job at Bank of America.
In 1981, Connie was reunited with her children and they settled in Foster City, California. As someone who had unfulfilled dreams of going to college, she emphasized the importance of education and financial independence. She was very proud of her children at their graduations and at every major milestone of their lives.
Connie moved to Rancho Cordova, California in 1990 when her division at Bank of America relocated their offices. During her 12 years there, she worked hard and took on overtime shifts to save money for her family. She was at Bank of America for 24 years moving up the ranks to become a Loan Officer at the time of her retirement.
In 2003, Connie retired and moved to Rossmoor, California. Connie found a community in Rossmoor’s Chinese American Association, Filipino American Association, and was an active participant of her Qi Gong class. She was a devoted member of the Ambassador Sunday School Class of North Creek Church. Her friends appreciated her companionship, her service and most of all her cheerful attitude.
Connie can be best described as a woman with quiet strength, someone with a strong faith in God who had an incredible capacity to forgive. She embodied compassion, gratitude, sacrifice, and patience and reveled in the simple things in life. Most of all, she found joy and happiness through her children and her grandchildren.
She is survived by her mother Kan Muy; her siblings Thomas Uy Jr., Florence Go, Jean de los Santos, Teresita Tan, Eugene Uy, Manuel Uy, and Anthony Uy; her children Veronica Ong, Jeremy Ong, Dennis Ong and Stephanie Ong Stillman; and her grandchildren Timothy Ong, Michael Ong, Jared Ong, Emmanuelle Ong, Ezekiel Ong and baby boy Stillman who is due in April, 2014.
"Eulogy - A Life Remembered
by Stephanie Ong Stillman
My mother was one of the most unassuming people you will ever meet. She wasn’t one to be the center of attention. She was someone who usually preferred to be in the background.
Seeing all of you here today, my mom would have been overwhelmed by the love and support. She would have even felt slightly uneasy at all the attention.
But you all came – family from near and far, friends from Rossmoor and from North Creek church - we are here because in some way or another my mom’s life impacted ours.
When I think of my mom, I think of someone who exhibited compassion, gratitude, and strength. She is a Cancer Survivor and someone who overcame major struggles. She is someone who always put her family first, and someone who just had an incredible capacity to forgive.
I am truly indebted to her for the sacrifices she made to make sure my siblings and I had a good life.
When I was 7 years old, my mom left the Philippines for the United States to seek a better life for us. Because I was so young, I didn’t quite understand why she would leave us for what would be 2 years. Now I look back and see how incredibly courageous my mother was – She moved to the U.S. by herself, learned a new culture and language, and established herself so that we can have a better life.
I can still remember when I found out that we were finally moving to the US – I had my bags packed for weeks. It wasn’t so much I was excited to move to a foreign country, I was just excited to be reunited with my mother. I remember those first few months here in the US, I would wait for her to get home from work at the bus stop every day so I could walk her home.
One of the things people often would say about my mom is that she was a hard worker. She was the oldest of nine siblings and became the breadwinner for her family, even sacrificing her dreams of going to nursing school.
As the breadwinner for our family, she worked her way up the ladder at Bank of America for 25 years. She spent countless hours working overtime, seldom taking vacations, and often sacrificing time with her family to make sure she could pay the bills. I know she was rewarded every time one of us reached a milestone in our lives. All she wanted for us to be was happy and successful.
My mom would always say, the best thing she ever did was to move to the US – this country provided her with the American Dream. And in retirement, I believe is when she was finally able to fully live that dream.
The last 10 years of my mom’s life was the happiest she had ever been. She had an incredible community of friends at Rossmoor. Over the last week, I’ve been getting emails from many of her friends – many shared memories of my mom helping them through a painful time and most simply that shared they would miss her cheerful attitude and her sweet smile.
You see the essence of my mother was in that cheerful attitude and that sweet smile. She was in many was a very simple woman - she was a woman of faith, put her family first, and she found joy in the simplest things in life.
When I was younger, I might have judged her for being so simple – I couldn’t quite understand her - probably because I was impatient, temperamental and I tended to over complicated things thinking the more difficult something was the better it was for me.
Now I value simple –I learned from my mom that true happiness lies in the ability to find joy in the simple things in life.
For my mom this meant:
- Going to her Qi Cong class (whom many are here today)
- Going to church
- Spending time with her kids and grandkids
- Taking a trip to Trader Joe’s (or as she pronounced it “Traders Joe” - I stopped correcting her….)
- Helping out a friend in need
- A really good pork bun – this is a woman who when the doctor told her she had color cancer, the first thing she said was, “does that mean I can’t eat any more pork buns?
I will miss so many things about my mom. Most of all I will miss
- All her funny stories about Rossmoor
- I will miss her special relationship with my husband whom she called her favorite son in law despite him being the only son in law
- Our conversations about President Obama. She really loved our President and she would often say, he is just like us. She saw in him the American Dream that she herself embodies.
- All her questions about the iPad. She really taught me about patience when we first got her that iPad. I had no idea that overcoming the concept of “slide and release” would take weeks.
- The way she leaves me message on my cell phone – she would always say in her professional voice, “Hi this is a message for Stephanie, this is your mother.” As if someone else would be listening to my cell phone.
- Most of all I will miss calling her and having her tell me I was going to be okay
And while I am still trying to reconcile losing my mother while I am about to become a mother myself, I find peace knowing that she has already taught me by example how to be a good mom.
The other day, my two brothers, my sister and I got together. We shared stories about our mom, we grieved, we cried, talked about our childhood and the struggles we overcame as a family. Through this hard time, I find comfort knowing my mom would be proud of us for coming together during this time – because to her family comes first.
Thank you to all for coming – your prayers and support mean a great deal.
Thanks mom for everything. As a tribute to you, we are naming our son’s Chinese name after you."
"Service. Sacrifice. Seeker. Strength. Smiles.
These are the words I take away after learning so much about the amazing mom of my sister-in-law, Stephanie. What a beautiful tribute today to a woman who truly seemed to get it right: oldest sibling of nine children who broke new ground in her family by making a way for others to come to this country for a better life. A seeker of new opportunities and more deeply, a seeker within her faith. So many honored Connie today for her sacrifice for her family, her strength through life's ordeals, her readiness to smile and her ability to serve -- without complaint -- and contribute to any and every community she joined.
Hearing Connie's life story shared by her beautiful family and many friends from Rossmoor today was a blessing. I've been gifted to know her youngest daughter for 20+ years. Now I know where Steph gets that determination and huge capacity to serve -- she had a fine example in a trailblazing mother. I learned a lot about how to live today. Rest in peace, Connie. Thank you for the gift of your beautiful daughter and condolences to all who loved Connie most and will miss her so dearly."
"I extend my sympathy to the family of Connie Ong during this difficult time of loss. I did not know your mother well but she was one of the first people I met when I moved to Rossmoor 1 1/2 years ago. I was in her Qi gong class and found a place behind Connie most frequently. I followed her gentle moves, knowing she was an experienced practitioner. She will be dearly missed in the Rossmoor community."
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