Penny Marie Mendoza

It’s extremely ironic how just a few short days after I accepted a Special Recognition Award from the American Cancer Society on behalf of Mariposa Magazine, Penny Mendoza, my sister-in-law, died after a 5 year battle with carcinoid cancer.  Penny was 49 and she left behind my brother and their 3 children all of whom were devastated.

Prior to this my mother died of colon cancer 30 years ago when I was in my 20’s.  And in the time between, several of my friends have fought or are fighting cancer – breast, colon, abdominal, melanoma, lymph, ovarian, or pancreatic.

So, like so many others, I take the fight against cancer personally. The witch needs to be put down.

Mariposa Magazine’s goal is to inform, entertain and inspire and I consider it a privilege to help educate and urge early detection and I pledge continued support of education and fundraising efforts so that someday husbands, wives, children, sisters, brothers, mothers, and fathers won’t suffer the loss of loved ones to this terrible disease.  I urge all of you to do your part, go for annual exams, pass along information, make donations – no amount is too small.  The life that you could help to save might be your own or that of a loved one.

Penny  Marie Mendoza was born in West Covina on May 20, 1963 to Ted and Jessie Foster.  Penny had three siblings; Teddy, Susan, and Danny and numerous nieces and nephews. Penny and Louis Mendoza were married for 26 years and they were blessed with three children; Louis Anthony, Anthony Louis, Angela Marie, and one grandchild, Harvey Louie.

Penny Mendoza

Penny Mendoza

Growing up in La Puente she attended Basset High School.  Penny was a very loving mother and when her children were young Penny was a Noon-Time Aide at her children’s elementary school as well as a volunteer for the Mommy and Me program.  Later she attended training and became a Certified Nursing Assistant.  She worked in this capacity for over 12 years.She loved swimming and water skiing which she actively enjoyed as a youngster.  She and Louis had many wonderful times going to country western music concerts and taking trips to Tombstone and Morro Bay.

Penny had genuine compassion and the gift of helping people.  This is why she was so outstanding and beloved at her job.  She often spoke about the deep joy and satisfaction that she got from caring for the elderly patients in her charge.

Penny passed away on September 27, 2012.

To know Penny was to love her.



Mariposa Magazine Is Making A Difference and Receives Special Recognition Award From The American Cancer Society                                                                                                                                                        

My Mother Died of Colon Cancer                                                                                                                 

Facing Down The Big C                                                                                                                             





written by

Emily is publisher and editor-in-chief of Mariposa Magazine. She's passionate about the hugely important role that Latinas play in the well-being and advancement of their families. She writes about Latina success stories and observations on life.

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