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Daniel Pazmino, 53: Marta Sanchez's 'Desesperada'

Daniel Pazmino, of New York, N.Y., died at the age of 53.
Courtesy of Yanira Camino
Daniel Pazmino, of New York, N.Y., died at the age of 53.

Updated June 15, 2021 at 1:25 PM ET

More than 600,000 people have died in the U.S. from COVID-19 since the pandemic hit this country and the world just over a year ago. NPR is remembering some of those who lost their lives by listening to the music they loved and hearing their stories. We're calling our tribute Songs Of Remembrance.

My funny, cool, dimple-faced uncle was the kindest man you'd ever meet. He can talk for hours about the New York Mets, movies, Ecuador, tattoos, and his precious Jeep. When I was planning to get my first car, he tried so hard to get me onboard and join the Jeep world. I ended up going for a Ford Escape, and I never heard the end of it. Just shows you how much of a passionate man he was. More than loving his Jeep, he adored his golden retriever named Goliath (appropriate), his two beautiful daughters, and stunning wife. Like Kobe, he was a Girl-dad. Tio Daniel was the man who taught me how to drive a stick and never lost patience when I didn't get the hang of it (I still don't know how).

My 53-year-old uncle was a fan of Marta Sanchez who is a Spanish singer, and this is one of her more popular songs. This song, in particular, brings me a little closer to him, with its poetic lyrics behind its upbeat tune. Marta sings "I walk in the sun, but it's winter in my heart / That's why I'm desperate / Because our love / Is an emerald that a thief stole." That's how anyone who's ever met him feels, as if a piece of our heart was stolen that we will never get back. He was one of kind, my dear Tio Daniel. —Yanira Camino, niece

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