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Hernandez / Legacy of Raul Guerrero

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Hernandez; I put forward an effort to name a park after him because if you mention his name, nobody will acknowledge him. You can go out here to all the leaders here in Odessa and nobody is going to acknowledge him. You may get some say, “Oh, yeah. I knew him.” But that is all you are going to get. Nobody is going to give him any credit for anything. I tried to name that park after him and I almost had it done. But then I had a local attorney go up against him, and there was another lady talking some stuff about him. I think the Hispanic leaders kind of followed them and decided that – they did not say no, but they did not say yes either. Everybody had agreed already, then decided they are not going to do it. Because Raul was not from Odessa. But, he does not deserve that. Raul never did anything for himself he did it for all of us. Whatever he did he did for the better of his people. He just wanted us to be treated equally and have the same rights as everybody else. Pero, just so many things- so many things that he did here while he was here in Odessa. There was a lot of other things I did not know about. You know what, there was a – a superintendent of the schools? He was Hispanic- I cannot remember his name but he is not here anymore. I had seen that we had a Hispanic superintendent. I was like “Wow, Man! Look how far we have come,” If you know the history of Odessa that is really remarkable, you know. So I went to his office one time. He asked me in and I sat down. It was a big office, nice certificates and all kinds of diplomas and things. We got to talking. I asked him,” Did you ever meet Raul Guerrero?” His eyes opened up and he said, “Did I ever meet Raul? Let me tell you the story.” He sarted telling me the story about how he met Raul. Raul took him to this south ranchito to this house. “He took me to this house to meet some people and that was in my early days here in Odessa. We went into this house and it was like being in a ranch or something it had all kinds of statues and Mexican type decorations.” “We went into this hall,” he said, “ and there were pictures of Poncho Villa, and Zapata, serapes, and all kinds of things. When we went into the back there were three Brown Berets standing there with their hands like this. I walked in and I did not know what I was walking into.” He was telling me this story and that is how he met Raul. Then he told me that they went to knock on doors. He remembered knocking on a door and an old lady came out and the lady was like, “No, No, no I do not want to vote-no voto yo! Get out of here! Vaya ese!” And Raul is like, “SENORA! Usted tiene que votar! You have to vote!” (Cannot understand 4:11) She was like “No.No. No. no eso” He was trying to convince her and she would not do it. He finally said, “Bueno senora, andal,e para su hijos!” “When something happens to you, your sones, or one of your family do not come looking for me!” And I guess she got convinced that she had to vote. But he all kinds of ways of doing things. He was not a bad guy, but he would speak out. He was telling me that story, and I thought “wow who would of thought this guy met Raul Guerrero.” That guy was everywhere. Zapata: Do you remember the superintendent’s name? Hernandez: I do not remember his name. All of the sudden my mind does not work like it used to. I use to be very sharp- I could remember names and dates. Now, I cannot remember. Too many years. Too many years in the body shop.

Interview Interview with Nick Hernandez
Subjects Citizenship › Voting and Voter Registration
Recreation and Leisure
Tags Guerrero, Raul
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Interview date 2016-07-08
Interview source CRBB Summer 2016
Interviewees Hernandez, Nick
Locations Odessa, TX
Duration 00:05:25
Citation "Legacy of Raul Guerrero," from Nick Hernandez oral history interview with ,  July 08, 2016, Odessa, TX, Civil Rights in Black and Brown Interview Database,, accessed September 23, 2020