things that matter

He Had To Stay Silent In Mexico As His Father Smuggled Him To The US From Guatemala Or They’d Lose Everything

Courtesy of The Moth

The group had to stay silent while traveling through Mexico so they wouldn’t get caught.

Nestor Gomez was only 10 years old when his parents fled Guatemala for the United States. It was 1980 and the civil war in the Central American country was tearing the nation apart. His parents had to make the decision to leave their children behind with family as they worked and saved money in the U.S. They planned to go back to Guatemala to get their children, but the war changed those plans. The violence had increased and they realized it was not safe to go back and live in Guatemala so they decided to bring the children to the U.S. Gomez was 15 years old when his father returned to bring his children to the U.S. They couldn’t wait for visas for the children so the parents only had one option and that was to smuggle the children through Mexico and across the border.

“This was going to be a dangerous undertaking. Not only because at that time I was 15 years old now, but because my middle brother was five years younger than me and my other brother was ten years younger than me. He was just a little baby,” Gomez recalls. “But also because my sister and a friend of hers who was tagging along were both teenagers. As such, they could be victims of sexual assault along the way.”

Gomez’ story is filled with moments of suspense, fear and triumph as the group makes their way to the U.S. An unexpected encounter with Mexican immigration officials and a greedy coyote threaten to sabotage their run for freedom from a grueling civil war. Yet, nothing can stop this group of immigrants from chasing their dreams. The journey tests the children and their father as they discover secrets and hidden plans.


READ: A Millennial Guatemalan Artist Gave Lotería Cards The Millennial Treatment And They Are Hilarious

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A Ranch Is Reeling After One Of The Southern California Fires Killed 30 Of Their Horses

Things That Matter

A Ranch Is Reeling After One Of The Southern California Fires Killed 30 Of Their Horses

Alyssa Miulli / ABC7 / YouTube

Southern California is fighting several wildfires around Los Angeles.

Southern California is dealing with multiple wildfires surrounding Los Angeles and with the Santa Ana winds expected to return today, it’s unclear when these fires will be put out. The Creek Fire, north of Burbank, has devastated parts of the San Fernando Valley and has burned 12,000 acres and several homes. One of the places hit by the fire is Rancho Padilla in Sylmar, Calif., just off Little Tujunga Canyon Road. The property was housing more than 60 horses from different owners when the fire started, according to the LA Times. ABC7 reports that the fire moved quickly towards the property overnight and woke up those living on the ranch at 4 a.m. because of the smoke. Despite their best efforts, the ranch workers were unable to save the animals and nearly 30 horses burned to death on the property.

“All I could think about was the horses, the horses, the horses. And they were like, ‘Get out, get out, get out,’” Patricia Padilla, whose family owns the ranch, told the LA Times. “The structures can get rebuilt, but the lives of the horses can’t. That’s my biggest heartbreak.”

There are currently five fires burning in souther California threatening homes, schools, livestock, and major freeways. Creek Fire, which hit Rancho Padilla, is 5 percent contained, according to Los Angeles Daily News. The latest fire to erupt is the Lilac Fire burning in San Diego forcing mandatory evacuations almost immediately. Thousands of Californians have had to evacuate their homes and the Santa Ana winds continue to fuel the fires.

For more information on the fires, visit Cal Fire. There you can find up-to-date information on the fires and the progress firefighters are making to contain them.


READ: A Major Earthquake Has Devastated Parts Of Southern Mexico

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