Rolf Bernard Juario Memorial Fund

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Update #1

almost 7 years ago

I want to graciously thank everyone on your beyond generous donations and gift of friendship in honor of Rolf. This was his favorite time of year with our family and Christmas has never been the same since his mother passed away years back. We find joy in all of your thoughts and words, and especially in your generosity. Happy holidays from our family to yours.

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For those of you who have had the pleasure to know and Love Rolf Bernard Juario

I know that the death of my cousin Rolf is a shock to you all, as it is a total shock to us in our family as well.  On behalf of his sister Monika and our family, I wanted to extend a series of events that ultimately lead to the passing of my cousin.  We apologize for any silence, we have been doing the best we can, especially after the death of my uncle, Rolf’s father, back in February we have been pulling together to figure out how to cope with such a sudden and unexpected death.  As you all know, the costs of planning a memorial comes with expenses, expenses that we weren’t and are not prepared for.  Rolf’s wishes were to be cremated; therefore those arrangements are being finalized.  Once we have collected enough money we will put together something beautifully intimate to honor and celebrate his life.

Here is a first hand account of a series of events that lead to the passing of Rolf Juario, son, brother, cousin, uncle, friend, Artist, Photographer, and Brilliant Spirit and Soul. 

On December 9, 2015, Rolf Juario passed away from complications brought on by HIV/AIDS.  

On February 8, 2015 Rolf’s father, Bernardino Juario passed away after living a full life.  During memorial services for my uncle we noticed that Rolf had loss some weight and he mentioned that he noticed as well.  He felt that he had a stomach virus and said that he’s been trying to solve it by drinking probiotics.  Shortly after that week Rolf spoke to my mother, Francisca Juario Tabay, and mentioned he still wasn’t feeling well and that the doctor’s wanted to do a colonoscopy to find out what the problem may be.  Even though Rolf’s father was a Doctor, Rolf was deathly afraid of needles and would avoid any testing that required it.  He never got the colonoscopy done.  Months continued to roll by and he still wasn’t getting better and was in fact treated for walking pneumonia.  Rolf has always stayed in touch with my mom on a weekly bases, still saying that he’s not feeling well and despite urging him to get more tests done he just tried to push through, again anything to avoid needles.  Part of us thought he might still be grieving my uncle and that’s what had brought on some of these symptoms.  Rolf told us (during our visit to him in the hospital) that this summer, on the way home to Vegas from a job in LA, that he actually passed out in the middle of the highway while driving and woke up with his car stopped at the center divider.  He said that he lost his glasses during the impact and drove blindly 30 mins until he found the next rest stop to gather himself to find his glasses. 

In late August early September I spoke with Rolf, he was always giving me advice about my Art, using his experience as a talented Photographer to help guide me.  He had become a mentor to me in my Artistic endeavors and not just my goofy older cousin Rolf.  When we talked he mentioned that he was moving to a new place and everyone who lives there is super nice.  He was looking forward to a change and a fresh new start, continuing going for new gigs around the city.  Again, he was always in touch with my mom throughout the month. 

On October 15, Rolf’s sister Monika went into major surgery for her back.  While we all were keeping her in our thoughts, we received a phone call from Rolf’s new roommate Joe stating that he had found Rolf passed out and unresponsive and that he had to be rushed to the hospital.  Since Monika was just getting out of surgery and recovering, my mother and I were made next of kin to handle anything that needed to be done to help treat him.  I served as a mediator as well as my sister Jennifer to help our mom with carrying out what needed to be done to find out what was happening to our cousin.   When Rolf was admitted to the hospital he was really really sick and no one knew why, including the hospital that had no previous records on him.  Rolf was very weak, hallucinating, and confused and so we allowed them to run a series of tests to find out what was causing all of this.  My cousin Floranne, who is a nurse, was coincidentally in town and was able to see Rolf.  At that time, she felt that Rolf looked gravely ill, so my mother, sister, cousin Herly who is also is a nurse, and I made arrangements to make a trip up there to see him that Wednesday.  On October 20, 2015 Rolf Juario tested positive for HIV/AIDS.  When he was admitted to the hospital his T-Cell count was below 15, he had pneumonia and was being tested for tuberculosis, and Hepatitis.   

On October 21st we arrived to Southern Hills Hospital in Las Vegas to a very responsive and alert Rolf.  He knew we were coming and anxiously waiting for our arrival.  We were delighted to see that he was in fact the same old Rolf, ready and wanting to conversate.  We surrounded him with love and concern, where he himself disclosed to us the results of his condition of being HIV positive.  Even though we asked the nurse’s and doctors how far along into the condition he was, that part of it was not given to us, and that possibly may have been Rolf’s wishes.  During our stay he said that he was ready to do what he needed to get better and that he was no longer scared of needles if that’s what it was going to take.  He looked great, he really did.  We spoke to him about the possibility of him being hospitalized again and what would be his wishes if his condition was worse, and he stated that he wanted what his dad wanted.  He was very aware of his condition and seemed relieved to finally know what was happening and going on with his health.  He honestly seemed at ease with the news and we were there to help sort out what needed to be done, ask the questions that needed to be asked to continue his treatment and make sure that he knew that whatever he wanted or needed that we would do our best to make that happen.   

We spent our time with Rolf keeping him company and rallying up as much information as we could get in regards to his care.  Rolf’s roommate Joe was very instrumental in helping us as well.  We spoke to his caseworker to see if it were possible to get him back here to California and what type of medical benefits he had.  We spent 2 days getting the ball rolling to make sure that at the time he would be able to get the immediate treatment he needed while starting the process to apply for medical benefits for him here in California, in hopes to get him closer to us.  Although his ultimate wish was to be down here in So cal closer to family and friends, he was actually comfortable with being in Vegas with his new found home and friends, who helped take care of him in the following weeks.  When we left Rolf it was hard, but again he was very upbeat and ready to apply for more gigs.  His eyes filled with tears and ours as well when we said our goodbyes, he graciously said, “Words are not enough to say thank you.”  At this time I think we all shared a moment to be reminded of what family is.  We urged him to stay on top of his medicines and we left feeling somewhat confident that he could really pull this off, that he can really live with this and be okay. 

About a week and a half after we went to visit Rolf he was released to go home, we were very surprised.  I spoke to him on the phone and his roommate Joe helped him get all his medications, they were going out for small walks and going out to eat.  We talked on the phone about him getting a new tablet to help him on interview and show his work, again he was just moving along like nothing was fazing him, he had that resilient spirit that was looking forward to working and taking photographs.  About 2 weeks later we got a phone call that Rolf was rushed to the hospital again.  This time arrangements were made for Monika and Rolf’s niece Heidi to go up there to see him.  They spent a couple of days with him and made sure that he was taken cared of and they were able to sit with love and comfort for each other.  Rolf was released again from the hospital a few days later.         

    

Things started to move so fast at this time; he was calling just to say hi, he said he was walking around and feeling better.  I believe that he went to the hospital again but then released.  At around the first week of December Rolf was admitted to the hospital because he was having trouble breathing and was very weak.  On December 5 I received a phone call from the Southern Hills hospital stating that Rolf was on life support, we were shocked at this news.  The next day he was taken off of life support and doing well on his own.  While monitoring his progress via communication with the hospital and Monika, we were also trying to figure out when we can go back up to Vegas to visit him.  On December 8 my mother received a phone call from Rolf’s nurse saying that Rolf wanted her to bring him his medicines.  My mom had to remind the nurse that we are in California and that we will make arrangements to get that to him.  Rolf was confused and sounded very weak and hallucinating but I told my mom that maybe that was Rolf’s way of getting the nurse to get in touch with my mom.  I thought in my heart that maybe he just needed to hear my mom’s voice.  That night they spoke and he was a bit confused but they were able to speak one last time.  Monika and Rolf were able to speak one last time as well and were able to say and send each other love.  I know in my heart he knew he was loved because he is loved.  The very next day Rolf Juario passed away around noon on Dec. 9, 2015, needless to say we were all shocked even though we knew what he was battling. 

The days following the death of my cousin took a lot of processing.  As I mentioned earlier, his sister Monika is trying to recover from her own medical and health conditions.  We are trying to figure out how to move forward with making arrangements and the how to cover the costs.  We have come together to cover the cost of cremating his remains, for those were his wishes.  These arrangements will be carried out the second week of January by Monika and she will bring him home to Southern California right after. 

At this time we have decided to start a Memorial fund for my cousin so that we can honor and celebrate his life.  We are overwhelmed with the amount of condolences and beautiful memories we are seeing being posted to his Facebook page.  We want to do something to help all of you in your time of grief and allow you all to come together to honor his spirit that has had an obvious and life long impression.  As soon as we make final arrangements we hope to give all of you enough notice so that we can remember the life of this special and infectious individual. 

As you all know, Rolf was always behind the camera taking the photos.  Please continue to post and share memories, images and videos of him and his work.  We would like to use it to put together something beautiful at his memorial.

Love and Blessings to you all.

Rolf’s Family

 

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Kimberly Tabay posted a new update:
almost 7 years ago

Update #1

I want to graciously thank everyone on your beyond generous donations and gift of friendship in honor of Rolf. This was his favorite time of year with our family and Christmas has never been the same since his mother passed away years back. We find joy in all of your thoughts and words, and especially in your generosity. Happy holidays from our family to yours.

Join the Conversation

Sign in with your Facebook account or

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