Husband scouts paths for wife to follow in life and eternal life - Catholic Courier
A man and woman pick blueberries.

Leonor and Ed Rivera picking blueberries. (Photo by Ed Rivera)

Husband scouts paths for wife to follow in life and eternal life

My late husband, Ed, was raised in Buffalo. I grew up in New York City. In our upstate New York college, I felt uneasy. I was used to police sirens and rattling subways. The quiet was strange.

Ed was right at home. He impressed me by identifying the many trees and colorful birds on the campus. I hadn’t grown up with many trees. All I could identify were gray pigeons. I thought he was so smart. 

He confidently walked up and down the hilly and snowy campus wearing hiking boots. I slipped and slid in my fashionable NYC high-heeled boots. Ed didn’t laugh; he held my arm to help me.

Leonor hiking alone with Ed in her heart (Photo by hiker passing by)

Throughout our courtship and marriage, Ed taught me to enjoy the outdoors. We went tent camping and hiking. I, who used to think roughing it was a Holiday Inn, felt God and Ed’s love in nature.

When we hiked, Ed would run ahead to check how steep, high or rocky a trail was. He would run back to me and hold my hand, leading me through the safest and easiest path he could find.

After Ed died, I was leaving church in a sad, grieving mood. A friend asked if I was OK. I said I was upset that Ed left to go to heaven without me. My friend said, “He didn’t leave you. He has just gone ahead to prepare a place for you.”

I remembered the many times Ed had run ahead to check the trail. I felt comfortable as I understood that Ed had gone ahead to help me find the best way to follow him to heaven. One day, when my job on Earth is done, Ed and Jesus will come back for me, and they will take my hands and lead me home.


Leonor “Leo” and Ed Rivera were members of the local Worldwide Marriage Encounter community for 32 of their 34 years of marriage until Ed unexpectedly died of a genetic heart defect on Aug. 1, 2020.

The last 2024 Worldwide Marriage Encounter Weekend is Oct. 11-13 at Notre Dame Retreat House in Canandaigua.

To read more of Leo and Ed’s blogs, visit

Tags: Catholic Marriage
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