June 6, 1990-October 7, 2015 One Heart, One Family
Senior Airman Tristan Michael Ross, 25, of Stockton, CA passed away on October 7, 2015. On June 6, 1990, Tristan was welcomed into the world by the proudest parents, Elaine Webb and Yum Ross, in Leonardtown, MD. Tristan charmed the hearts of his teachers at Leonardtown Elementary School with his infectious smile and respectful manners. He made quite the athletic reputation for himself on the soccer field and golf course. In between running around barefoot on the beach (earning what his Mama termed “country feet”) and climbing nearly every doorway in sight, Tristan modeled and was active in the local Boy Scout Troop.
His only-child status ended with the birth of his sisters, Kylie Ross and Shaye Webb. Tristan embraced his role of “Kuya,” Tagalog for big brother. With his sisters, he learned to be gentle, a quality that translated in every relationship he had. He settled fights between the girls even when he was stationed in New Mexico, doted on them when he was home and asserted his protective presence in every situation. Kuya Tristan took his role as protector very serious for his Mama, sisters and cousins as he scared off potential suitors regardless of their age (including one 7th grade boyfriend who requested that Tristan would stop threatening him at school). Tristan was quick to take ownership of the people he loved, and in turn, we learned to take ownership of him. We were proud to call him son, grandson, brother, cousin, nephew, the love of our life, friend and colleague.
At ten years old, the East Coast boy who always retained traces of his MD accent and upbringing, welcomed the California easy vibes. Tristan attended Sierra Middle School in Stockton, CA. His adolescent summers were spent poolside with his cousins, road tripping across the continental USA and perfecting his signature “The Rock” face for the cameras. If he was not carrying his ukulele—ready at any time to strum sweet tunes to the ladies, Tristan could be spotted with his Eskrima sticks in hand. Influenced by his cousin, “Kuya” Ryan, Tristan studied the Filipino martial art and even co-founded The Era Krew (TEK), his high school’s Eskrima group. After attending three years at Lincoln High School, Tristan graduated from Laguna High School, class of 2008, in Elk Grove, CA.
Tristan took pride in his family heritage and he sought to live a life of honor. Upon high school graduation, Tristan’s quest for honor and tradition led him to the United States Air Force. He selflessly served as Senior Airman in the 58th Aircraft Squadron at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque, NM in capacity of crew chief as he governed the title of C130 Aerospace Maintenance Journeyman. His fellow men and women in blue learned to appreciate “Rosscoe” and his quick willingness to help, generosity and gentle way of making everyone feel welcomed with the occasional prank.
With each prank, Tristan’s colleagues began to recognize his subtle giggle that started in his eyes, extending into a smirk, and then quietly shaking his entire body. And when the Air Force graciously gave him leave to pay his final respects to his Lolo, Tagalog for grandfather, Tristan eased his family’s heavy hearts as he sought to make halo-halo, a multi-ingredient Filipino drink requiring fresh shaved ice – in the hospital’s kitchen. The unconventional location for such an intricate drink allowed the family to laugh one more time together as Tristan’s giggle joined along.
Tristan enjoyed travelling all over the USA including Hawaii, his favorite spot! His other signature pose “hang loose,” preference for board shorts over military blues and his affinity for easy living became a reality.
Although Tristan’s life was short, he mastered the lessons those who live longer seek to understand: to be quick to protect the vulnerable, to handle everyone with gentleness and kindness, to honor those who have come before us and laugh often with others. In honoring Tristan’s life, let us live out those lessons every single day.
Tristan is preceded in death by his grandfather, Joe Obando; his uncles Edison and Eduardo Obando; and a younger brother, Taylor Edward Ross. He is survived by his mother and step-dad, Elaine and Wayne Webb, and father Yum Ross; younger sisters Kylie Ross and Shaye Webb along with his furry children: Buddha, Karma and Chino. He leaves his maternal and paternal grandmothers, Lucy N. Obando and Huyen T. Ross. He is also survived by several aunts and uncles, numerous cousins and family members, in addition to, his brothers and sisters of the US Air Force.Cherokee Memorial Funeral Home in Lodi, CA will handle the funeral arrangements.
The viewing will be Thursday, October 22nd from 3:00pm to 8:00pm at Cherokee Memorial Funeral Home, 831 E. Industrial Way, Lodi, CA 95240.
The funeral is Friday, October 23rd with a 10:00am mass at St. Luke’s Catholic Church, 3925 N Sutter Stockton, CA 95292.
The burial will be at Cherokee Memorial Park, Hwy 99 at Harney Lane, Lodi,CA 95240 following the service. All are welcomed at the banquet hall, Merlot, located at 23 W Elm Street Lodi, CA 95240, for a Hawaiian-style reception immediately following the burial. Please sign the online guestbook at www.cherokeememorial.com.