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It Took 71 Years To Graduate High School, But These Latino BFFs Had A Great Reason

Three friends who dropped out of Lincoln High School in Los Angeles to serve in World War II have waited seven decades for the moment they could finally call themselves graduates. The emotional ceremony marked another shared milestone for lifelong pals Julian Lopez, Tony Romero and Lupe Malacate. http://4.nbcla.com/ehshErP

Posted by NBC LA on Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Credit: NBC LA / Facebook

You are never too old to finish what you started!


Three besties are finally graduating high school… after 71 years! Julian Lopez, 90, Tony Romero, 88, and Lupe Malacate, 89, are all World War II veterans that had to abandon their dreams of becoming high school graduates when they were drafted for the war in 1944. Before being deployed for the war, Julian Lopez married his high school sweetheart, Henrietta. She too had to drop out of school — in those days, you were not allowed to be married and in school at the same time. Connie Miranda, the daughter of Julian and Henrietta, talked to the Los Angeles Unified School District to allow the three friends, along with Henrietta, to graduate.

“I believe that anybody who served their country is entitled to all the benefits,” Miranda told NBC LA. “I think I might cry when I see them walk across the stage to get their diplomas.”

Now, after more than 70 years and a year and half spent in talks with the LAUSD, all four seniors (pun fully intended ?) have walked across the stage at Abraham Lincoln High School. It goes to show you that you are never too old to go for your dreams. But, why graduate now?

“So we can go to college,” Julian told NBC LA while laughing. “I’m looking for a job!”


(H/T: NBC LA)


READ: 101-Year-Old Mexican Abuelito Got His U.S. Citizenship To Vote Against Donald Trump

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California Sets Vaccination Plan For Agricultural Workers During Next Phase

Things That Matter

California Sets Vaccination Plan For Agricultural Workers During Next Phase

Brent Stirton / Getty Images

The world is racing to vaccinate everyone to put a stop to the relentless Covid-19 pandemic. In the U.S., states and counties are rolling out their own plans based on suggestions from health experts. California, home to the largest population of farmworkers, is making them a priority.

California has laid out their vaccination plan and farmworkers are being prioritized.

California is facing a relentless Covid-19 surge of infections, deaths, and hospitalizations. According to The New York Times, California has the second-highest level of infections per capita in the U.S. More than 30,000 people have died of Covid in California and the vaccination effort has been severely lagging.

California’s vaccination plan has been criticized for its very slow roll out.

According to the California Department of Public Health, more than 816,000 doses of the virus have been given to residents. There have been more than 2 million vaccine doses shipped to California. Currently, California, the most populated state in the country, is still in Phase 1A. Phase 1A is for healthcare workers and long-term care residents. The Vaccinate All 58 campaign claims that there are 3 million people in California in Phase 1A. Almost 40 million people live in California.

Activists have been calling on Governor Gavin Newsom to make sure that farmworkers are prioritized.

California is home to the largest concentration of farmworkers in the U.S. The Center for Farmworker Families claims that 500,000 to 800,000 farmworkers, or about 1/3 to 1/2 of the farmworker populations, live in California. Seventy-five percent of farmworkers in California are undocumented.

As the rest of the state was able to shelter in place, farmworkers did not stop working. They provided a necessary lifeline to the nation in keeping the food supply running. Farmworkers are more likely to contract Covid because of their living conditions. Studies show that the low wages that farmworkers are paid means that many live in crowded conditions.

READ: As The U.S. Rolls Out The COVID-19 Vaccine, What’s The Future Of Vaccine Access In Latin America?

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Gavin Newsom Appoints Alex Padilla To Kamala Harris’ Vacant Senate Seat

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Gavin Newsom Appoints Alex Padilla To Kamala Harris’ Vacant Senate Seat

Credit: DNCC via Getty Images

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris is leaving behind a Senate seat representing California. Gov. Gavin Newsom was under pressure to appoint a person of color and he is coming through. Alex Padilla, the Secretary of State of California, will be filling the seat.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has appointed the first Latino senator from California.

Alex Padilla has a spent more than a decade serving the people in California from Los Angeles City Council president to California Senate to secretary of state. Padilla was the favorite to take the seat and gives Southern California rare representation in the United States Senate. As Secretary of State of California, Padilla stood against President Trump and refused to turn over voter data to the administration in 2017.

Padilla was raised by hard working immigrants.

Padilla’s mother and father emigrated from Mexico to Los Angeles individually and eventually met and married. As a shortline cook and a housekeeper, Padilla’s parents instilled in him the value of hard work.

“Through his tenacity, integrity, smarts and grit, California is gaining a tested fighter in their corner who will be a fierce ally in D.C., lifting up our state’s values and making sure we secure the critical resources to emerge stronger from this pandemic,” Newsom said in a statement. “He will be a Senator for all Californians.”

Padilla is going to the Senate keep fighting for the values he has defended.

As the country gets ready for a Biden administration, there is a lot of attention on the recovery effort. The Biden administration is going to be tasked with bringing the country back from the brink. Covid has wrecked the economy and upended the lives of millions of families. Biden and the current Senate and House will be responsible for distributing the vaccine and getting the American people back to where they were before the virus devastated the nation.

Congratulations, Sen. Alex Padilla.

California is happy to know that you will be representing us in the Senate.

READ: Here Are The Southern California Latino Politicians Gov. Newsom Should Consider For Kamala Harris’ Empty Seat

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