October is cancer awareness month and Lowrider Magazine would like to dedicate this issue to all the special family members, friends, and loved ones we have lost over the years, and also to those who have survived this incurable disease.

When someone is diagnosed with cancer, everyone close to that person also suffers and is left with the sad memories of the agony that their loved one endured during their fight against it. All we can really do is just be there for them! Let them talk when they feel like it; and just listen. We may be powerless to cure them of the ailment, but that doesn’t mean we can’t give them all the support in the world when they need it. Unless you have dealt with the disease personally, you simply can’t relate to it and say, “I know what you’re going through.” What you can do is offer a steady vote of confidence that everything will be OK as you provide them with the companionship they need so that while they physically might be going through it on their own, they know that you are right by their side fighting with them. Talk about other things when you are with them, like the good times you’ve shared over the years. We are all on borrowed time, and in life we go through good, bad, and sad times, but we hang onto the good times and those stories are always brought up in any conversation. … “Remember when?” “Do you remember that time?” “Remember that place?” … We have to hang on to all our memories because in the end that’s all we’ve got. Life truly is short, as the saying goes, and the people who come in and out of our lives and the experiences we’ve shared with them are priceless.

In this issue, we share with you a few special people who were taken from us way too early. One was David Leal Sr., father figure to all, Lowrider pioneer, and painter who added color into everyone’s life—just like the beautiful colors that flowed from his spray gun. Then there is the inspirational story about a 17-year-old named Eddie Hernandez, who brought together various car clubs in NorCal to help carry out his wish of building a ’64 Impala that he could ride in and experience before ultimately losing his battle with cancer. There was also the Bomb Club Originals Cinco de Mayo car show and benefit for our contributing Lowrider Magazine photographer, Jae Bueno, whose photos formed a bond between featured car owners’ families and friends as well as his own. He will never be replaced and the memories he left behind can be found in the thousands of photographs that will last forever in his name. We are deeply saddened by his death and take comfort in knowing that our platform helped spread his life’s work. He truly loved what he did.

As I write this, I can’t help but be reminded that I have lost family to this unfortunate disease myself. My grandmother, young uncle, and friends of mine lost their fights, and I also have a couple close friends who are putting up the good fight right now. Because of the spread of this ailment, I’m sure all of you readers share or will share the same sad thoughts and memories that I’ve had. Into each life a little rain must fall, and when someone is diagnosed with this deadly disease, all we can do is hold the umbrella for them and pray that a cure will soon come.

The cotton candy pink Cadillac on our Cancer Awareness cover belongs to Lifestyle Car Club’s Bobby Flores who has been a veteran car builder for a long time. This ’79 plush Cad is also a car show favorite because of the unique candy pearl paintjob created by the DeAlbas. Knowing Bobby’s personal commitment and detail throughout his years of custom car builds, you can only wait to see his next creation, as this man only gives a 110 percent toward the Lowrider life.

The Lowrider staff jumped on the bus and went out to tour the Mesa Arizona Lowrider Show, sponsored by Motorsport Showcase and the Society Car Club. This jam-packed show felt like a festival from sun up to sundown, and with good reason. The work and effort put in for months in advance of the event made for an incredible time, and we couldn’t help but wish that Richard Ochoa could throw four of these each year! Good shows come and go so fast when you’re having a blast, and this one was no exception. Congrats to all involved on another great show promotion.

While gathering information to write this editorial, I Googled the word “cancer” and found out that there are 100 kinds of cancer, and couldn’t help but be overwhelmed by what I was reading. As I read, I just sat there behind my computer, exhausted at the thoughts of terror this disease puts into all walks of life. Not too long ago, I joined a 24-hour cancer walk to support my friends fighting the disease. As I walked, I did laps around a football field for hours. After a while it became dark, and as the walk continued there were white paper bags that had candles lit inside them called luminarias. The lights were there to assist us in not only illuminating our paths to walk, but were also there as a reminder of those whose candles burned out too early because of cancer. All I could do was read the names of lost ones and survivors still battling, and coming across the names I recognized of people I was close to devastated me. At the same time, reading them motivated me to keep walking and to keep my own hopes up that the pain so many families have felt at cancer’s hands could soon be alleviated with a cure. I swelled up with emotion and I encourage all of you who read this to get involved with a cancer walk yourself. Every step makes you feel like you’ve been in church for a year. And while finding a cure has eluded mankind thus far, we can do our part to help the search for it while supporting our loved ones along the way.

Cancer may take away a lot of things from a lot of people but we will not let it take our spirit, nor our memories.

Joe Ray