Leilani Peros Tagorda Badley
Lucy Peros | All photos courtesy Leilani Badley ‘Ohana
The gift of love, generosity, family traditions and wisdom of her Sakada grandparents gave this Sakada offspring a perpetual gift she plans to pass to her own children and grandchildren.
Leilani Peros Tagorda Badley was born on April 30, 1964, in Santo Domingo, Ilocos Sur, Philippines. She is the daughter of the late Aurea Peros Tagorda and the late Reynante Tagorda. She is one of the many grandchildren of the late Sakada Silvestre Peros, Sr. and Herminia Torricer Peros.
Leilani attended Kahului School, Kindergarten to 8th grade, St. Anthony Jr. and Sr. High School, 9th to 12th grade. She graduated from Seattle University with a Bachelor of Science in Health Information Administration and pursued a Master in Business Administration (MBA) at Western Governors University, Salt Lake City in Utah. She worked as a leader in the healthcare industry focusing on regulatory compliance, HIPAA Privacy and health informatics for healthcare organizations in Hawai‘i, Maryland, Virginia, Washington D.C. and California. She worked at Maui Memorial Medical Center, Wahiawā General Hospital, Kaiser Permanente Hawai‘i Region, Mid-Atlantic States Region and Northern California Region, and UC Davis Health. She is currently at the California Department of Veteran’s Administration in Information Technology. When Leilani was at Wahiawā General Hospital, she was chosen as the Manager of the Year.
Leilani has four children: Lauren Catherine Golebiowski (daughter) who attended Holy Names University with a BA in Music. She is currently pursuing her Master in Music Education at Liberty University. She is currently employed as an Assistant Teacher at Celebration Preschool. She is married to Jakub Golebiowski. He is employed with Freddie Mac as a Sr. Resolution Planning Financial Analyst. They have two daughters Sofia Katarzyna (9) and Emma Aurea (6).
Leilani’s second child is Basil Thomas Badley (son). Basil graduated from California State University with a BS in Business. He is currently self-employed as a Real Estate Developer/Project Manager in Detroit, Michigan.
Elizabeth Marie Orellana is Leilani’s younger daughter. She attained a BS in Health Sciences at James Madison University and a Master in Pathology from Drexel University. She is currently employed at Kaiser Permanente in Sacramento as a Pathologist Assistant. She is married to Gilmer Orellana. He is currently employed at California State Department of Health as an IT Specialist. They have two children: Aurea Elise (3) and Gilmer Thomas (newborn).
Theodore (Teddy) William Badley (son) is the youngest of Leilani’s children. He is currently pursuing a Cybersecurity Certificate from UC Davis University.
Leilani has four siblings: The oldest is Reynold Victorio Tagorda, employed with Headquarters United States Forces in Korea as Assistant Deputy Director. He is married to Joanna Chong. They have three children and three grandchildren.
Generoso (Gene) Tagorda is her second brother. He is employed with the Department of Education as a Custodian and has a landscaping business. He has two children.
Richard and Robert Tagorda are Leilani’s twin brothers. Richard is employed with the State of Washington Adult Services as a Social Worker. He is married to Lucille Banzon Tagorda. They have two daughters. Robert is employed at the Palace Hotel as a Chef. He is married to Mary Jane Marquez Tagorda. They have two daughters and two grandsons.
Leilani is very active in the community as well as in church ministries. She is a Board Member for NAKEM (National Alliance for Knowledge, Empowerment and Meaning). She is a member of the California St. John the Baptist Parish Finance Council. She leads the Divine Mercy Ministry as well as being a lector. She is a member of the American Health Information Management Association, California Health Information Association, and the American Institute of Healthcare Compliance.
Leilani enjoys reading, playing mahjong, swimming, golfing, traveling and spending quality time with her children and grandchildren.
Leilani was very close to her Sakada grandparents, Silvestre Peros, Sr. and Herminia Torricer Peros. They were originally from Santo Domingo, Ilocos Sur, Philippines. Silvestre was one of the thousands of Sakadas who came to Hawai‘i to work in the sugar and pineapple plantations in 1946. Young and strong Silvestre welcomed the opportunity, so he signed up to come to Hawai‘i even if it meant leaving his young wife, and his young children. Their children at that time were Aurea, Nenita and Greg Peros. He signed up to find a better life for his family. He left the Philippines in January 1946 aboard the S.S. Maunawili from Port Salomague, Cabugao, Philippines. HC&S Sugar Company sponsored him. He lived in Camp 13 when he arrived on Maui together with the other Sakadas. He worked as a fertilizer maintenance man and irrigation system maintenance man until his retirement in 1978. Life at Camp 13 was a lonesome one for Silvestre because he missed his young family so much. So in July 1946, his family followed him to Maui, Hawai‘i. His family was one of the very few families living in the camps at that time. Their son James was born in Hawai‘i in 1947.
In 1950, Silvestre and Herminia decided the Philippines would be a better place to raise their growing family. So he took his whole family back to the Philippines then returned to Hawai‘i by himself. Herminia was expecting their son, Sylvester, Jr. In fact, they thought he was going to born on the boat on their way back to the Philippines. Fortunately, they reached Santo Domingo just in time for his birth, on January 3, 1950. He was born on land after all!
When the Peros children matured into adolescents, Silvestre and Herminia decided once again it was best to have both parents present in raising their children. So nine years later, the whole family came back to Hawai‘i except Aurea because she was already married at that time. However, she was able to come back to Hawai‘i a few years later with her own family. Silvestre’s family settled in Camp 4. Their son Jesse, the youngest, was born in 1962. After Camp 4, they moved to the 6th Increment because HC&S was phasing out the plantation camps. Herminia also worked and retired from HC&S. Herminia and Silvestre, Sr. were very loving and caring parents and grandparents.
Leilani had these very heartwarming reflections on Grandpa Silvestre (Vestre) and Grandma Heminia (Herming): Respected Patriarch and Matriarch of the Peros family. They lived a life of integrity, love, kindness, and generosity. They were the hardest working people I will ever know. Because of this, they stressed the importance of education and encouraged and supported their children and grandchildren to pursue higher education degrees. They instilled the values of faith, family, friendship, heritage/culture, education, finance, food and fun. Lilong (grandpa) and Lilang (grandma) provided abundantly for all their children and their families. We celebrated every recognized holiday together as a family. Lilang even made up her “holidays” or reasons to celebrate by buying a whole cow or pig, just so we would come together as a family. This is what brought Lilong and Lilang the greatest joy. Our most celebrated holiday was New Year’s Eve, also Lilong Silvestre’s birthday because we were treated to a freshly cooked lechon (whole roast pig) in their backyard. Our Peros family continues this wonderful tradition today. Since moving away from Maui, I have also continued this tradition with oven lechon. Definitely not the same but in honor of my Lilong and Lilang’s tradition. I am so blessed and grateful to my Lilong and Lilang for their hard-work, sacrifice and courage to come to America. It is because of them that I am a Filipina American citizen of the United States of America. They petitioned my mother, father, brothers Reynold and Gene and me to pursue the American Dream. I can never repay them for this generous gift and opportunity. However, I try to honor them every day by following their example of integrity, love, kindness and generosity. I also have adopted their values of faith, family, friendship, heritage/culture, education, finance, food, and fun. Before I moved away from Maui, Lilang Herminia didn’t want us to move and gave me these words of wisdom: “Lei, it is not how much money you make, it is how much money you save.” Of course, Lilang was always right. I love and miss my Lilong and Lilang very much. My children reminisce about their wonderful memories playing tricks on Lilang. I keep their memory alive with their photos in my home. Agyamanak unay, (I am very grateful).
Lucy Peros is a retired schoolteacher, having taught at St. Anthony Grade School and Waihe‘e Elementary School. Both of her late parents, Elpidio Cachero Cabalo (a 1946 Sakada) and Alejandra Cabudoy Cabalo of Hāli‘imaile, worked for Maui Land and Pine Company. Lucy now enjoys retirement and has time to join other seniors in the Enhance Fitness Program under the Department of Aging three times a week. She also attends the line dancing class and other activities at Kaunoa and joins other Waihe‘e School retirees when help is needed at the school. Lucy also devotes some of her time to activities at Christ The King Catholic Church. She enjoys writing and reading in her spare time.