I remember being in college at Universidad del Sagrado Corazón and walking into Plaza Las Americas in San Juan, Puerto Rico one day after a tough college day (they sure do happen!) and entering the then existing Borders bookstore. My uncle Angel Aguilar Jusino and I were meeting for a movie and some coffee, and he ended up purchasing "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" for me as a gift. The rest is Hogwarts-based history for this Hufflepuff.
I grew up in the ethereal tropical island of Puerto Rico and my uncle, Angel Aguilar Jusino, was my hero. I say that not only did Harry Potter save me that day because the story was such a captivating tale, but my uncle was always there to save me, whether I had a bad day, didn't believe in my writing or my talents. Thanks to him and his inspirational ways, I became a journalist, and now a professor and a teacher. He believed in educating us and in making sure we discovered new gems! He would always subscribe us to magazines, for example, such as "Rolling Stone." Books were his life, he instilled a love of reading into me and my brother's heart, as well as my cousins. I remember this day clear as day and remember us seeing the first film together and truly enjoying it. After that, I continued with the series, one that has become a pop culture gem to this very day.
My uncle passed away from pancreatic cancer in February 2018. His spirit and love for us is eternal. I will always remember him whenever I read about Harry, Hermione and Ron, and watch the films. Thank you, Angel. I will remember you and your love for reading. No matter how much time passes, I will always be grateful. Always.