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“I never asked God why he gave me all those little tests. I knew he wanted me to focus on dealing with them.� -- Papa Cado (Also known as Arthur Mercado)

• “When I was three, Daddy taught me my first life lesson: • It’s okay to be afraid, just don’t let fear stop you from doing what you have to do.” Me

“I loved two things more than anything else as kid: Grandma’s biscuits and gravy and playing baseball.”


“My best friend in the whole world was my brother James. We called him Ernie; I don’t know why.”

“I got my spirit of determination from Mom. But, she loved our pet monkey, Peppi, more than Ernie and me.�

“Dad was one tough dude. His advice: never throw the first punch, but always make sure you finish the fight.�

“I love Pamela from the first time we met in the sixth grade. I finally gave up trying as a junior in high school.�

“Pamela was the hottest girl in high school, and loved fast cars. We got along well.�

“Man, did I love Diane! I thought I was going to spend the rest of my life with her.�


got so sick in the Army, they almost killed me. Then they gave me a honorable discharge five months into my tour.�

“In my twenties, I liked fishing, hunting, and teasing snakes.�

“My first marriage went so well, I was awarded custody of our daughter for life. I became her Mom, Dad, and Best Friend.�

“My brother James died suddenly at 32. The doctors never found out why. I’ve been lonely ever since.”

During my thirties, I was a heavy gambler and a cool California cowboy.

In my forties, God’s little tests began in earnest: by-passes, stents, angioplasties, endarterectomies, and outer body experiences. I became a regular with noted heart surgeon, Paul Tierstein, and his team.�


Finally, got the marriage thing right in my fifties. Susan became my soulmate, my guardian angel.

“The heart stuff got so bad, you had to laugh. It became a standoff between God and me. I decided I wasn’t about to lose.

“In my sixties, I decided to go to a Heart-Healthy clinic where I made lots of new friends with old hearts. This guy named Matt says we should write a book about your life. I tell him he’s crazy.”

“I’m closing in on 70, working on the heart thing, when this guy Parkinson’s shows up. Now I’m dealing with nightmares.”

“Surprise! As we head into the final stretch, I discover Diane and I had a daughter, Teresa, 40+ years ago.

I died peacefully on Friday, September 30, 2016 at 9:07 PM surrounded by family and friends. But I did leave behind some markers that I once passed through here.

Two great women, Susan and Diane, who loved me.

Two daughters, Teresa and Mindy, who loved me.

Four granddaughters, Savannah, Summer, Sierra, and Serena, who loved me.

“The best collection of mint-condition baseball cards in this world and the next!�


two books about my ordinary life, the lessons I learned, and a few practical suggestions about how to be the odds—at least for a while. See you on the other side”

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One extraordinarily humble man  

Life of Arthur Mercado in pictures.

One extraordinarily humble man  

Life of Arthur Mercado in pictures.

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