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date: 19 February 2020

Tijerina, Reies Lópezlocked

(21 Sept. 1926–19 Jan. 2015)
  • Lorena Oropeza

Extract

Tijerina, Reies López (21 Sept. 1926–19 Jan. 2015), political activist, was the third of seven children born to Antonio Tijerina and Erlinda López, both migrant farmworkers of Mexican descent. Tijerina always stated that he was born on a cotton sack next to the fields in the agricultural town of Fall City, Texas, testimony to his mother’s determination to feed her family. Poverty marked his childhood. He went to work in the fields alongside his siblings as a young boy. Following the harvest took precedence over attending school, and Tijerina estimated that he never received more than a third grade education. He credited his mother with endowing him with an enduring comfort in hard times, a deep faith in God. Her death when he was just seven profoundly affected him. “My mother … planted in my blood, soul, and spirit, the seed of justice, of truth, and of mercy,” Tijerina wrote years later....

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