By Lucy Peros
Sakada Corner, Fil-Am Observer August 2010 Issue
Page 8, Sakada Feature
SEPONIAS Valdez Badua came to Hawaii in 1946 together with his good friend, the late Bartolome Sablas. They came on board the S.S. Maunawili via Cabugao, Ilocos Sur. He camer for the adventure and to find a better life for himself and his family even if meant leaving his young wife and children behind.
He was born on January 27, 1913 in Sarrat, Ilocos Norte.
He went to Kauai first and worked in Lihue for awhile, then moved to Honolulu before setting down in Maui. He worked at the Wailuku Sugar then transfered to Pioneer Mill in Lahaina. He worked in the field doing odd jobs, as a ditch man [irriggator], then as a luna [supervisor]. He retired from Pioneer Mill in 1978. He also worked part-time as a carpenter and helped his children build their homes.
Seponias lived in Wainee Village, more popularly called Lahaina Pump, together with his friends Arsenio Jacinto, and the late Bartolome Sablas, and Mr. Tabbal in a one room single men's house. He enjoyed attenmding some events in the camp especially chicken fights. He is remembered as a talented carpenter helping his neighbors and friends fix their homes without expecting anything in return. He and his wife Abdulia Gedulia Badua are blessed with five children.
THeir first child is Germana, married to Ernesto Julian. She works for Pacific Life Guardian Insurance and as an agent for Valley of the Temple. They lived in Honolulu and have four children.
Their second child is Avelino Badua, married to Clarita. He is a retired contractor. They lived in Haiku and have one child.
Their third child is Jovita, married to Guillermo Tamayo. She retired from the hotel indusrty. They have four children.
The fourth child is Tarcila, married to Loreto Julian. She retired from the hotel industry and have four children.
The fifth child is Virginia, married to Moses Timbal. They own a tropical flower business in Hana. They have two children.
One of the many memories that Seponias have shared with his grandchildren was riding along the Lahaina Pali [there was no highways yet at that time]. They even had to stop over at Maalaea to rest before heading back to Lahain from central Maui.
Seponias enjoyed fishing with his son-in-law, Moses. He also enjoyed helping in Avelino's garden in Haiku. He live a happy long life with a simple goal: to see that all his children are settled in their homes which he helped build, to see his grandchildren get a good education, and to see his family members care and helped each other. As they say in Ilocano, "naurnos a pamilia." He reminded his grandchildren not to forget their roots.
Virgie Timbal, Seponias youngest daughter had these heartwrming words about theie father: "My Dad was the best Dad. He never neglected when he left us in the Philippines. He always supported us financially even with the littles wages he eraned. He was a very loving, mellow Dad. He never got angry with us. He always emphasized in getting a good education beacuse education is the key to success which you can take with you anywhere you go. He always told us to be good people. Even our husbands learned a lot from my Dad. We all love him very much."
Nelson Julian, one of Seponias' grandchildren summed up so eloquently his memories about his grandfather. "Grandpa was a man who toiled and labored in the cane fields above the hills of Lahaina under the hot Maui sun, covered with red dirt. He instilled the value of hard work and perseverance to pursue the goal of having his whole family together and providing them with a better life. Having lived with him and my grandmother, I had the privillege of having a first hand look of him getting up early in the morning to go to work on the fields and the immediately go and work as a carpenter till dark or even later. Now that I am older, I often wondered how he had all that energy. He was a man of driven by his good work ethic and family. He always took the time for his family. If I needed a ride, he would be there. One night when I was 12, we were practicing late for basketball and it was getting dark, I was thinking I had to ride my bike up Lahainaluna Road in the dark. Lo and behold, my grandfather was there to pick me up. He was always there for us. He loved to work for his hands and I was always amazed at what he could build as a carpenter. He was a self taught man and he did his craft well. He build many homes including his own but the greatest thing that he built was his family that he loved so dearly. He put his heart and soul into proving a better life for all of us. He was our patriach who instilled the values that if you have passion, soul, determination, a lot of heart and willing to work hard, you can become successful at whatever you want to do in life. He left a legacy for all of us to follow and to this day, I still follow what he taught me about value of hard work and determination to provide a better life for my children."
Seponias' last advice to his grandchildren on his deathbed was: "agsingsingpetkayo amin nga appokok [ be good always my grandchildren]." Seponias Badua passed away on February 27, 2009.