PEERS Perspectives is a blog series that offers thoughts and reflections from our staff and community members on mental health, current events, and the ways they affect our lives.

Today’s post is an open letter to KCSM Radio DJ Chuy Verela after he played his annual Latin jazz tribute for Day of the Dead. Written by Communications Coordinator Joshua Walters

     I found myself listening to your broadcast for Day of the Dead. The serene sounds and tributes to those who had passed, really ushered in an appreciation for this moment, to be alive, creative, with many blessings to be thankful for. My grandmother, Nana, passed on Holloween at 102 and we have been re-organizing as a family as she was the last of the grandparents. It all makes you think about future generations and those who will outlive us -para los ninos.      

Many friends and mentors have fallen on hard times during this season, whether it’s breast cancer, Parkinson’s, surgeries, or other ailments. In each case, I find myself a part of a supportive group of friends and family who are Zooming or picking up groceries, sending their regards, or helping out. Even in this time of separation, coming together and being there for those who matter, means even more as we cannot always be there in person.      

I missed coming into the station this year for my annual drop-in. But in lue of it, I’m writing you this and calling more to love ones while we still have them. Para los Nanas. As always I’ll continue listening, it’s always wonderful to hear a familiar voice on the radio, such as yourself. Better than hearing other voices, ones that don’t have quite a selection of Cuban rhythms and Latin flavor.

-Your Man “El Jesus Josue Walterinos” aka Josh