Veronica & Nikolas

“My son was meant to be a tree”

Veronica Herrera-Ramirez lost her 24 year-old son Nikolas “Nikko” Malliarodakis on March 21st, 2016 when he was hit by a driver who was under the influence.  As any parent knows, losing a child is one of the most difficult things anyone can possibly endure in his or her lifetime.

“I had been dealing with health issues, and I came up with the idea of becoming a tree after life three years ago. Nikko just loved the idea. So when this all happened, I looked at a picture of a casket and I said, I’m not going to put him in there!”.

Nikko loved nature and wrote a poem for me in high school and drew a tree for me; I don’t know if it was a premonition or what.

When Nikko was about 3, we would go read at the bookstore and we came across The Giving Tree. We were both crying and he couldn’t believe the tree did all that! I bought the book, and every day I still read to him now.

During our conversation and interactions with Veronica, we got to know her on a more personal level and connect with her story. ¨My son´s story is beautiful. He was meant to be a tree. He wrote me a beautiful poem in high school as if he knew I would need this to find comfort.¨
She shared a poem with us that her son had written to her years before:

¨To a loving mom from a loving son.
My View –
The view right now that I can see,
I love for, I care for,
As it shows beautifully.
While I ride the back of the mountains,
Sing with the trees,
Run with the grass, and that´s
how it should be.¨

When Veronica found the Bios Urn, she knew it was perfect for Nikko. She chose to use a Pine tree and planted the Bios Urn on July 7th, 2016 (her son’s 25th birthday) in her home in Prunedale, California. Today, a healthy young pine seedling grows beautifully in her home, surrounded by family photos.

¨I gave him life and because my immense love for him will never die, I am only compelled to continue to give him life through this tree. I will forever take care of him and I pray somehow all his heart and soul spread throughout this earth.¨