70 cheers for Carlos Yeung
NEW BEGINNINGS - Bum Tenorio (The Philippine Star) - November 13, 2016 - 12:00am

On his 32nd birthday in 1978, Carlos Yeung, a Chinese-British businessman who has a diamond jewelry business in Hong Kong, flew to the Philippines and traveled for many hours to Cebu to marry the lovely Mariquita Salimbangon in civil rites.

“I will do everything in my power to make you happy,” Carlos told Mariquita on that day, Nov. 5, 1978, three months after the two of them first met in Hong Kong. (They got civilly married again in Hong Kong on Nov. 29, 1978. On March 3, 1979, they had a church wedding in Hong Kong.)

Fast forward to 2016, on Carlos’ 70th birthday. The birthday boy is still singing the same tune — of love, of devotion to the woman he brought to the altar.

“The best part about being 70 is I don’t feel the age. I’m married to my love, Mariquita, who is also my lucky charm. And we have wonderful children. And friends who are always there for us,” beamed Carlos Yeung at his recent heartwarming birthday celebration at The Pig & Palm in Cebu City.

“Thank you for always making me feel so special. Even on your birthday,” Mariquita told her husband. “I wish you long and healthy life — long enough for you to see our grandchildren walk down the aisle. I give you love and wish you forever happiness with our family.”

If it were any indication of Carlos not “feeling the age,” he and Mariquita clocked in at The Pig & Palm, which served the best steak and tapas that side of the city, with hands clasped at 6 p.m. He left the party at 2 a.m. — still strong, sprightly and sober.

“It was a good eight hours of partying. I am very happy,” Carlos said. In the car, on his way back home, he repeated in his heart and mind how his wife and children Carla McKowen, Martin and Jewelle feted him with kind and touching words that night.

“The most admirable skill and one which I try to emulate from my father is his business acumen. He is the most skilled and compassionate negotiator I know,” Carla said.

For his part, Martin said, “Patience, humility, hard work and generosity. These are the lessons I learned from my father that became the backbone of my life today.”

“My father taught me that through hard work and perseverance we are capable of accomplishing anything,” said Jewelle. “He went into property management many years ago without any formal background or knowledge in construction and took it upon himself to learn through experience and determination. This has made a huge impact in my life, to never underestimate what I can do and to never limit myself to what I have done in the past.”

The night of celebration was filled with love. Here are 70 cheers for Carlos Yeung. Happy birthday!

(E-mail me at bumbaki@yahoo.com. I’m also on Twitter @bum_tenorio and Instagram @bumtenorio. Have a blessed Sunday!)

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