Paalam, Vivien Ordinario Oropel (1973-2023)

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From Migrante BC

To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die. – Thomas Campbell

Vivien “Ingkie” Ordinario Oropel, 50 years old, passed away at Burnaby Hospital on November 8, 2023, at 5:45 AM. She is survived by her husband Teddy “Panoy” and her children Vincent, Sean, John, and Justin.

She is also survived by her mother, Nanay Elsa, her beloved siblings and in-laws, Nestor (Perna), Jane (Paco), Helen, Erel (Genevieve), Joffrey (Nancy), Juean (Jachyl), Nie-ann, and Ernesto Jr. (Diana), and her many nieces and nephews. Vivien is preceded in death by her father Ernesto Sr. and her brother Ronald.

Nanay Elsa’s birthday with Vivien’s siblings (L-R) Erel, Helen, Vivien, Nanay Elsa, Jane and Ernesto, Jr. (Photo credit: Jane Ordinario)

Vivien’s childhood and younger years were spent in Cotabato. She studied high school at Notre Dame of Kidapawan for Girls after which she went to Davao to study nursing at the Davao Doctors College.  She passed the nursing licensure exams in 1995 and was employed as a school nurse in the Department of Education in 1996.

Like many thousands of Filipino women before her, Vivien left for Canada in 2001 and worked in Vancouver as a live-in caregiver to support her family. She was determined to finish the required 24 months under the LCP program, sponsor her husband and two young sons Vincent and Sean so they could be reunited. She did and her family grew with two more sons John and Justin born in Canada.

Top: Vivien wihth Migrante BC members at the Migrante Volleyball at the Park. Bottom: 2008 group photo at the Launching of Migrante BC with Vivien (second row from left). Photo credit: Migrante BC

Rather than be deskilled, Vivien challenged the system so she could work as a nurse.  She took and passed both the English language exam and the nurses’ exam. She was a member of the Filipino Nurses Support Group (FNSG) under the defunct Philippine Women’s Centre. Vivien was always generous with her time in the community. In 2008, she was one of the many founding members of Migrante BC, the grassroots organization of Filipino migrants and immigrants, and was very active in the many programs and activities of Migrante BC. At its first assembly in 2011, she was acclaimed as one of the Migrante BC’s  seven member- coordinating collective: Vivien Oropel together with Florchita Bautista, Ana Cagas-Tabella, Leo Alejandria,  Juliet Rivada, Marjorie Eda, and Jane Ordinario.

Nurse Vivien as the frontline essential worker during the pandemic. (Photo credit: Oropel family)

She served as one of the many frontline and essential workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, working as a nurse during this difficult period at the Three Links Care Society. She was a union member of the BC Nurses Union (BCNU). Before she became a full-time worker at Three Links, she worked on-call and casual basis at the Willingdon Care Center, Dania Home, Normanna Nursing, Chartwell Carlton Retirement Home.

In February 2022, Vivien was diagnosed with Stage 4 bile duct cancer. She went through a series of chemotherapy which she said helped with her appetite and lessened the pain. She appreciated the love and support of her family and friends and embraced hope in prayer.

Mother’s Day with husband Ted and the sons (Photo credit: Oropel family)

The members of the extraordinary Ordinario clan are founding members, members, or proud supporters of Migrante BC. Vivien and a younger brother Ronald were both founding members and helped Migrante BC grow to what it is now. Both are forever missed.

To post a tribute to Vivien, express your condolences, share stories and photos, please go to the online memorial for Vivien Ordinario Oropel at https://www.forevermissed.com/vivien-ordinario-oropel/about.

Vivien, you are forever missed.  Rest in peace. Thank you for everything.###