Elsa Quirino Ballesteros

A very kind hearted person, always cheerful, unselfish, loving, generous to everyone with whatever she has, a very gentle human being, so full of life, love, and spirit ... and possessed a heart of an angel.  These are only a few of the qualities and essence of the woman that I had been so fortunate to have been blessed to be my cherished wife for 28 years!

Quite simply, I've never met or known anyone like Elsa who held the type of merit that she had.  She always saw the good in each person she met ... always putting their best interest ahead of her own.
Patient and without prejudice, she always gave the benefit of a doubt for something that was questioned and she was quick to make you feel comfortable.  You soon realize that she was not just a remarkable person, but truly was a child of God who exuded goodness, love, and compassion.  From a very young age, she already emulated God's righteousness and generosity.  As a young girl, she lead a group of kids in her neighbourhood and called themselves, "The God Lovers Group" ... and she carried out her virtue throughout her life.  It was never a wonder why people are naturally drawn to her.  Elsa can befriend a total stranger because she gave that warmth with her pleasant and tender personality in a manner that captivates you.

Such a nurturing person, she loved tending to her flower and vegetable gardens and delights at the first sign of growth.  Even if you can buy the produce much cheaper in a store, she preferred growing them herself for there was nothing like the care and attention that she gave and the satisfaction to see them grow.  She beamed with pride and joy, eagerly and generously shared the bountiful harvests from our garden to our family and friends.  As passersby compliments her flowers in front of our home, without hesitation, she readily shares them unselfishly.  For she is as happy to see the smiles on their faces as the effort that she had put to make the flowers bloom to the beauty that is a reflection of her own decency.

Another of her interests was her love to arrange and decorate flowers and to bake cakes.  She made it for weddings, birthdays, graduation, and other occasions.  She was also a very graceful and adorable dancer of ballroom, Hawaiian, and modern dance.  Her gentle grace and ability was much sought after.  Often times, due to the lack of equally competent male dance partners, she always end up dancing the male part herself just to allow other females to have their chance on the dance floor.  She did this because that’s how she was - the always giving, helpful, and fun loving person.  She encouraged everyone to have a great time, and she was infectious.  I was no help to her in dancing since I have two left feet.  She teased me and said that I'm simply a musician with no rhythm.

Lucky for me, she loved and enjoyed to cook, spoiled me with her many creations as she always came up with some of the tastiest dishes.  She loved getting recipes from television cooking shows but refused for us to get the Food Network Channel and said that she won't be able to do anything or watch any other programs ‘cause she'll be stuck on that cooking channel all the time.

With such a tender heart, she cared for animals so much and said that once she is gone and if God will allow her to come back, she would ask to become their guardian and protector and especially to the ones who are abused, the sick, and abandoned.

With her many talents, the one thing she truly loved was singing.  Having a vibrant alto voice with a very soothing tone, she had won many singing competitions and sang on radio stations as a young girl.  Together, she wrote the lyrics and I the music to our Filipino compositions since she is very eloquent in the dialect.  But for much of the adulations she received, she preferred to give her own praises to God and to the many gifts and blessings He bestowed upon her.  She offered this gift by becoming the soloist with a group of close fr
iends at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in downtown Toronto for almost two decades, always having the sincere love to sing for God.  She was meant to be there for it was also at that church where we first met - 34 years ago.

There had been so many beautiful memories I have of Elsa and those will be the ones to give me comfort and will try to fill this great void that now exists in my life.  We always said to each other that we’ll grow old together and together we’ll go when our time comes.  But we don’t hold our own agenda as God has another plan which at this moment, I simply fail to understand.  For I have lost my best half, my confidant, and my very best friend.  Without her, it now feels like I’ve been diminished to half the person that I once was.  Although I lost an angel here on earth, I know that heaven is celebrating as they gained another one to watch over, not just for me, but for those who feel the lost as well.

Here are just a few words to one of my songs that she inspired me to write:


            “She's near which makes me glad, she smiles when I am sad

            She's what she is to be, ‘cause she don't pretend to me

            She takes away my fears, and wipe my eyes from tears

            You know, she's the Angel of my life

            She gives me my request, when she love I know she's best

            She knows how to express, that love that beats the rest

            My music has no sound, if she is not around

            Cause you know, she's the Angel of my life ...”

I love you so m
uch sweetheart and thank you for loving me unconditionally.  Thank you for loving me despite all my imperfections and limitations ... for always giving me the allowance for my faults and to help me become a better person ... for teaching me courage and kindness amidst adversities ... for giving me the confidence to face our life together for it is with you that I found my own strength, understanding, and maturity.  I was able to do things with you since you have been the wings that allowed me to soar.  Your enthusiasm for life was my pillar of strength and your undying spirit was the bridge that allowed us to cross into the unknown, yet even when I falter and fall, you always guided me back up to keep going and try again because you were there with me ... always by my side. 

You have been so brave when you weathered so much pain and suffering with your numerous health challenges over the years, yet you never complained of the afflictions that you went through but
simply accepted them as the cross that you carried.  Even with all these hurdles in your life, you remained the beautiful and wonderful woman that you have always been.  I am so proud of you and truly so honoured to be your husband!

Goodbye for now my dear sweet Elsa.  Though your body was tired and battered, your spirit remained strong and unbroken.  Cherish your golden slumber for when you awake, such joy and celebration will take place in heaven as angels carry you to cross that rainbow bridge to paradise ... for you truly are, the Angel of my Life.

- Marc


“A loved one is a treasure of the heart, and to lose a loved one is like losing a piece of yourself.  But the love that this person brought you did not leave, for the essence of the soul lingers.  It cannot escape your heart, for it has been there forever.

Cling to the memories and let them find their way to heal you.  The love and laughter, the joy in the togetherness you shared, will make you strong.  You’ll come to realize that your time together, no matter how long, was meant to be, and that you were blessed to have such a precious gift of love in your life.

Keep your heart beating with the loving memories, and trust in your faith to guide you through.  Know that, though life moves on, the beauty of love stays behind to surround and embrace you.  Your loved one has left you that ... to hold in your heart forever.”

-- Debbie Burton-Peddle


Saturday, December 19, 2015 at 9:30am

Chapel of St. Joseph

Holy Cross Catholic Funeral Home

211 Langstaff Road East, Thornhill, Ontario, Canada L3T 3Z6



Fr. Matthew Robbertz

Fr. Bill Lordon


Marc Ballesteros

Eugene Tan

Marianne Tan

Christian Tan

John Joseph Honasan

Joshua Honasan

John Sinclair

Ryan Sinclair






Eye Has Not Seen

One Bread One Body

Be Not Afraid

On Eagle’s Wings