Veronica

NicaNica

Veronica Howard was sweet and quiet child, just starting to come out of her shell and make her mark in art and sports.

Veronica, an incoming fourth grader at El Carmelo Elementary School died along with her parents and sister in a car accident while vacationing in Kootenay National Park, British Columbia, Canada. She was 9.

Veronica was born on September 14, 2001 in Palo Alto, a bright spot for her family just after the attacks on September 11.

She was an introvert, lucky enough to be born to “adept parents,” who gave her time to warm to things at her own pace, says her aunt, Kim Saxe. She had recently started playing sports and was finding success in that arena.

Veronica also had a real sense of style and liked to put together outfits. “She knew exactly how she wanted things to look,” says Saxe.

Veronica is survived by her grandparents, Ron Howard, of Palo Alto and Jose and Natalia Dias of Turlock; aunts and uncles Kim and Tim Saxe of Los Altos, David Howard, of Menlo Park, John and Cindy Howard of Palo Alto, John and Teresa Dias of Turlock; Mary and Eric Horvitz and Natalia and Jim Moore; and cousins Andrew Saxe, of Palo Alto, Amanda, Laurel, and Gwen Howard, of Palo Alto, Carlo Dias and his girlfriend Samantha, Nicholas Dias, Carla and Andrea Francisco, Zachary Horvitz, Lana and Leah Moore, and Taylor Dias.

35 thoughts on “Veronica

  1. Dear Nica,

    We didn’t had the chance to know you very well but you were a wonderful girl for sure.
    With all our love Nica

    Patricia, Philippe, Adrien and Sandra

  2. Dear Nica,
    You are so nice! I wish you were still here with me. I’m so sad. I will always remember you as a friend.

  3. I reside in bc and am so sorry to hear of this tragedy. My heart goes out to all the family and friends of this beautiful family. You are in my thoughts.

      • I live in B.C. and was moved when I heard about this tragedy. It would seem that this world has lost a wonderful family full of eagerness and curiosity – four people fully engaged in the zest for Life. Please know my prayers are with friends, family and their community.

      • Dear Jane,

        It is indeed sad. Yet the Howard’s were an amazing family and while we will never be able to share our lives with them, our time spent together was fun, sincere, and loving. I am so glad you got to know of them despite this most tragic manner. It’s no exaggeration how special they are.

    • Thank you so much for you thoughts and prayers. The Howard’s were truly a special family. Please keep in your prayers the driver of the truck who must be absolutely devastated and mostly pray for the parents and sibling of these two wonderful parents and children.

  4. Mica,

    We will miss you. You are in God’s arms right now. May angel be with you.
    Tyler , Lauren, Cinthia and Matt Sheu

  5. This news was so sad. Everyone will miss you and pray for you. Prayers and thoughts from everyone will always be with you.

  6. Dear Veronica,
    I am really sad i never really saw you in life but i was great friends with your sister Sam. You guys are a great, supportive, and nice family and it is such a tragedy that you got into the car accident. You will be missed. Love always<3

  7. I had the pleasure of coaching Nica in Palo Alto 8U softball and was impressed by her sweet nature and can-do attitude. My daughter and I are deeply saddened to learn about the tragic loss of such a wonderful girl and a great family.

  8. Nica,
    Our daughter, Amanda, went through Pre-School Family with you. Just like your older sister Sam and our son Nicolas gravitated toward each other, so did you and Amanda. She remembers going to your house and playing dress-up with all the wonderful costumes you had hanging in your bedroom and playing outside in your backyard. You were a good friend and Amanda was lucky to have known you.

  9. Dear, Nica
    Nica, you were such a sweet,full of laughter,happy girl that I`ll always remember.
    I will always miss you and thank you for being such a cheerful girl that I`ll always
    cherish. May God bless you forever. Love, Stephanie.

  10. Nica,
    Marion and I will always miss seeing you after school, You were always such a trooper and always in toe with your mom. We will forever remember seeing you helping mommy carrying project leftovers to the car. You were such a big helper to your mom she was always happy to have the extra little hands help clean up. Marion will miss you helping her with projects. You were such a sweet heart we will miss seeing you and mommy together,May you enjoy playing with Angels above and the peace of God by your side. All our love Dee and Marion Rehbock.

  11. Dear Veronica,

    You are so articulate. Boy, can you believe we made jewelry from early in the day till it got dark. You weren’t kidding when you said that you loved to make jewelry. I am glad that we hung out together and had a nice time with all the beads.

  12. Dear Veronica,

    You are an articulate young lady. Can you believe we hung out making jewelry together from early in the day till near dark! Boy, you were not kidding when you told me you loved to make jewelry.

  13. Dear family of Veronica,
    Though I didn’t know your family, I am saddened to hear of your loss. My own nine-year old, born just two weeks before your Nica, is a joy to me, as I know Veronica must have been to her family. Please know that many people, even those you’ve never met, are holding you in their thoughts and prayers.

  14. Dear family of Veronica,

    I am so shocked to hear about this tragedy. That I feel bad for you.I will always miss you and remember we were in second grade classmate.God bless with you forever.

  15. I was blessed to have been a part of Nica Howards El Carmelo experience. We spent a wonderful year together with Mrs. McCoy. I loved every moment I spent with her. What a lovely family, what a tragic loss.

  16. Nica,

    I saw you around El Carmelo often, but never got the chance to really say hi, but I could always remember that you were Sam’s adorable little sister. I’m so sad to see you go so young, may you rest in peace

  17. Veronica,

    I have never met you, but because your sister is such a helpful and kind girl, I am guessing that you too are the same. I wish I got a chance to meet you before I moved to Japan in March. Rest In Peace~

  18. Nica,
    I remember when Sam and I were in the school play together and you were there with your mom I had nothing to do so I played board games with you, that’s how I know that you are the sweetest girl and I’m devastated that your family is gone! God bless you and your whole family!
    Love always,
    Erika <3

  19. Nica- Little miss Fashionista with such a kind heart. You always reached out to the girls in our troop who needed help. Your comments in book club were so full of wisdom for a 9 year old. You were a great friend to my daughter. You will be deeply missed.

  20. Dear Nica,
    I loved you big bows. I loved coaching you in soccer and your can do attitude. i loved your pretty smile and your gentle way that you clearly got from your mother. I wish I has been at the end of season soccer party to taste your famous cake. I loved how you and Lillian had such fun playing and making things at play dates at your house. Buster, the kitty loved it when you came over and played with him. Your dark hair and eyes were turning you into a beauty, You were so sweet when Lillian thought she would have to miss a birthday party but you and Estelle offered to save some of the treats for her so she wouldn’t feel bad. You were very thoughtful. You already had a place in my heart and you always will. I love you very much. I wish I could have watched you and Lillian grow up together through junior high and high school. I’ll think of you along the way, you sweet angel.

  21. Dear Nica,
    I loved you big bows. I loved coaching you in soccer and your can do attitude. i loved your pretty smile and your gentle way that you clearly got from your mother. I wish I has been at the end of season soccer party to taste your famous cake. I loved how you and Lillian had such fun playing and making things at play dates at your house. Buster, the kitty loved it when you came over and played with him. Your dark hair and eyes were turning you into a beauty, You were so sweet when Lillian thought she would have to miss a birthday party but you and Estelle offered to save some of the treats for her so she wouldn’t feel bad. You were very thoughtful. You already had a place in my heart and you always will. I love you very much. I wish I could have watched you and Lillian grow up together through junior high and high school. I’ll think of you along the way, you sweet angel.

    Reply ↓

  22. Dear Nica,

    Though we haven’t met each other, it will not be the same without you. Everything went so fast, I still think everything is back to normal. Hope you are happy with your family.

    -Leland

  23. Nica, We will all miss you a lot, and I am very sad to hear about the accident. You were such a great artist and a great person, and have a lot of friends that will miss you. Again, I will really miss you a lot, and I am thankful to have had the opportunity to meet you.

  24. Nica, you and Sammy were the most amazing cousins anyone could ask for. I had so much fun with both of you and you guys always made me smile. I remember the day when we discovered that Sammy was exactly one head taller than Nica and I was exactly one head taller than Sammy. We stacked our heads on top of each other every time we saw each other from that point just to make sure we were all growing at the same rate. I remember summers when we’d walk or bike to each other’s houses and make fresh lemonade, or play games in your play house with your rope swing and captains wheel. I remember the time when Uncle Robert took us motorcycling. We went over to Stanford and strapped on enormous helmets that barely fit. Then, Uncle Robert showed us where the accelerator and breaks were and sent us off. I freaked out, and in the thrill of the moment, forgot how to break. I went hurtling towards a tree with you guys running after me, laughing and screaming. I found my wits just feet from the tree and you both ran up to me and gave me a hug.

    I’m going to miss your hugs, smiles, and laughs so much. You were the high-light to any family event. I’ll love you forever and ever. Keep smiling wherever you are, please. I love you <3.

  25. Dear Nica,
    We only knew you a very short time as our daughter Lainey attended Kindergarten with you and you became buddies. We have wonderful memories of your playdates together and the stuffed animal tea party for your birthday that year; as well as the time your mom dressed up as a witch for Halloween, steaming caludron and all in class. We were so touched by the short time that we knew you and your family, we cannot imagine the loss that those closest to your feel and the Palo Alto community. Our hearts and prayers go out to you all. With love, the Spade Family

  26. My daughter has told me multiple times since the memorial, “Nica was NOT quiet. She had opinions about everything. She listened to other opinions, but she was not quiet.”

    I needed to set the record straight.

  27. Yes Herman, Thank-you for setting the record straight. Veronica was an articulate speaker. Your daughter is correct, she had lots of opinions. Veronica could talk and talk and talk.

  28. Dear Nica,
    I don’t know where to begin. I wish I didn’t have to begin this. You were always so sweet and optimistic, despite all the stupid things I did. You were such a generous person and you learned everything so fast. I used to look up to you a lot, thinking about how one day I wanted to be as smart and creative as you. I’m not quite there yet, but I miss you a lot. It’s frustrating how good people like you and your family are always the ones who have to leave. I remember the school year before the accident, we were taking an art class together with Ana. Your paintings were always so beautiful and artistic, which was another unique thing about you: your creativity. Since we would always get to class early, the three of us would play at the nearby playground. The week after you decided to leave art class, I remember telling Ana at the playground that I could still hear you laughing while climbing the monkey bars. Ana told me it was because I missed you, and I figured that I probably did miss you, but I could just see you at school the next day. Now, sometimes I’ll see a picture of you, and the same reassuring feeling that I’ll see you soon will come back for a split second, until I remember that I won’t. I don’t think I will ever stop missing you. I know I won’t, or any of your friends either. You will always be a friend and an inspiration to me.
    Missing you,
    CoCo 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *