Nightly Mass set at Mt. Carmel Cathedral
Saipan Mayor Donald Glenn Pangelinan Flores passed away yesterday afternoon shortly before 3pm at the Commonwealth Health Center. He was 62 years old.
Flores suffered a massive stroke on Saturday and since then was in the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit where he remained on life support until his passing.
According to Flores’ nephew, Vinnie Flores Sablan, the mayor was brought in at 9am on Saturday and peacefully passed away on Monday afternoon.
The late mayor’s wife, Cecilia, said her husband was a very loving, caring, and thoughtful husband, father, and grandfather.
“He is always there for them and always puts our needs first and his needs later,” she said. “He was a gentle person and never lost his temper and to him ‘we always come first’ and always tells us that we mean the world to him.”
Flores has only one son, Derron Untalan Flores, and two grandsons, Donavon Jared Flores and Devin Drey Flores.
“I want to give thanks to all the CHC doctors, medics, emergency room, and intensive care unit team, nurses and everybody that was with us in thoughts and prayers since Saturday and we want to extend our heartfelt support for everybody that was there during the visits and the rosary,” Derron Flores said.
Derron Flores also thanked his cousin, Danny Kintol, for finding his father and the Emergency Medical Team for responding. Flores was reportedly found inside his car.
“I also want to say thanks to CHC doctors Dr. John Tudela, Dr. Sherleen Osmond, and Dr. John Doyle and their team as well as family members from off-island who are sending messages online,” he added.
Family members, Saipan Mayor’s Office staff, government officials, friends, colleagues, and community members attended a rosary shortly after Flores’ passing, giving condolences to his immediate family.
Vinnie Sablan, who is the son of Flores’ sister, Angeline, said that a Mass will be offered today, June 3, 6am at Mt. Carmel Cathedral in Chalan Kanoa.
“The family will meet together and discuss making any arrangements on the date of the funeral,” Sablan said.
He said that there wouldn’t be any rosaries.
According to Rep. Ralph Yumul (Ind-Saipan), Flores will be honored with a state funeral.
Sablan told Saipan Tribune that his uncle was a very pure and people-orientated person.
“Growing up he thought of helping people around and making sure that we are always there for people who need help,” Sablan said.
Gov. Eloy S. Inos and Lt. Gov. Jude U. Hofschneider also extended their condolences to Cecilia, Derron, and the entire Flores family.
In a joint statement, Inos and Hofschneider said that Flores, who served the CNMI in numerous capacities and most recently as mayor of the Municipality of Saipan, “truly displayed what it means to be a productive and respected leader. As mayor, he worked hard in ensuring necessary services to Saipan’s people from his office were to the best that they could be offered. Through his agricultural experience, he was instrumental in maintaining projects to beautify the island, control our animal population, along with projects which helped in procuring much-needed resources to better serve the villages of his island.
“Through his devotion to his faith and family values, Mayor Flores was a loving husband to Chilang and an exemplary father and role model to his son and his grandchildren. We owe a debt of gratitude and a great deal of respect to his them for their support and love they gave during his term as Saipan’s chief executive.
“And through his passion of civic participation, he made many friends both on and off-island, and in turn inspired many young people to serve their peers, their villages and their island.
“The death of Mayor Donald Flores is a deep loss for Saipan and most especially, the Commonwealth. Through the leader that he was, it is safe to say that Saipan’s villages have been greatly enriched by his deeds and his persona, and because of that, he will be truly missed,” Inos and Hofschneider’s statement said.
Life of service
Flores was born on Oct. 22, 1948, in Guam and stayed with his family in As Lito, Saipan. He graduated from Mount Carmel School in 1967 and went to the University of Guam.
Flores started out as a part-time personnel specialist for the Department of Administration Personnel Division in Guam in November 1969.
Flores became a commercial farmer on Saipan in 1983 and was the director for the Department of Lands and Natural Resources Division of Agriculture from 2004 to 2006.
Flores secured his position as mayor of Saipan in January 2010, succeeding the late Juan B. Tudela. He ran as a Republican in the 2009 general elections and recently declared his re-election bid on April of this year, this time as an independent.
One of his accomplishments as mayor was securing a $413,000 grant from the Office of Insular Affairs to purchase heavy equipment to help better the community more.
In 2011 he launched a large-scale tree-trimming project along the Saipan Beach Road Pathway. Other projects that the Saipan Mayor’s Office has undertaken under his watch are planting flowers in the road medians as well as enhancements to the U.S Armed Forces Memorial and securing a federal grant that advanced the Saipan Dog Control Program and created the island’s first Animal Control Shelter.
Flores now joins his mother Margarita P. Kintol, father Edward A. Flores, and brothers Robert Kintol and Edward W. Flores.
He is survived by his wife, son, two grandsons, brothers Takeshi Kintol, James P. Kintol, Jerome P. Kintol, sisters Angeline F. Sablan, Erica K. Cruz, and numerous nephews, nieces, cousins, and other family members.