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Our Family History

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S: The Living Legacy of Felicitas Gonzalez Becerra

1: The Living Legacy of Felicitas Gonzalez Becerra The Queen of our hearts Written by Roberto Becerra Edited by Carisia Santos

3: A CENTURY Our maternal Grandfather was Juan Gonzalez Vazquez. He was from San Miguel el Alto, located in the highlands of the state of Jalisco, North of Guadalajara. The area can be very cold in the winter. Juan’s father Sostenes Gonzalez and mother Atilana Vasquez had five children, Juan, Florencio, Miguel, Rita and Librada. Florencio would prove to play an important role in our family history which will later be revealed. In order to make his living, Juan would travel up the coast to Nayarit. He traveled the winding mountains with his mules to the small village of Amatlan de Cañas. Amatlan is located in a tropical belt inland from Puerto Vallarta and toward the coast from Guadalajara, Jalisco. Amatlan de Cañas was rich with tropical fruits that were unavailable in San Miguel el Alto due to the cold weather. Juan would buy the fruit green and by the time he returned to San Miguel it would be ripe and sell quickly. Amatlan was not known only for its fruit, it was also home to very beautiful women and very handsome men. The original settlers of Amatlan were not indigenous, the people are light skinned and frequently blue eyed. Juan’s family was more of the indigenous blend. It is these differences which make being Mexican a special race, not just a nationality. Juan also saw the opportunity to work the mines of the area which were rich with gold and other minerals. He could hire his mules and himself as an arriero, or mule driver to earn his living.

4: Things must have been good for him and he prospered, at the time of his death he owned two houses and several plots of land along with other measures of wealth such as gold coins, sacks of maiz and peanuts. Juan was forty years of age when he married a girl from the neighboring town of La Estancia de Los Lopez her name was Teodora Aguayo Ramos, she was 18 years of age. They were married on October 2, 1907 in the church of Jesus Nazareno in Amatlan de Cañas. The marriage was presided over by pastor Basilio Chavez of the same church. Juan and Teodora had two children, Alejandro and Felicitas. Felicitas Gonzalez Aguayo was born July 10, 1912. Alejandro died at an early age. Mexico was in turmoil at the time, revolutions were awakening all over the country, especially in the north but would eventually work their way down south. Mexico had governments that were hostile to the Catholic Church; there would be uprisings to defend the Church by a Cristero Movement, crusaders if you will, that fought government troops that were pillaging church properties. Jalisco and Nayarit were strongholds of the faith. Eventually, Juan and Teodora separated. There are many versions as to why, but to speak of them would be disrespectful to Abuelita's memory. The simple truth is that the separation was traumatic. In her infancy, Juan took Felicitas away from Teodora and banished her from the region. Juan then took another wife without the benefit of matrimony; her name was Jesus Sorriano. At that time divorce was unthinkable, especially in small towns. Jesus Sorriano was more Juan’s contemporary and not interested in rearing children. Juan decided to take Felicitas to San Miguel to be raised by his brother Florencio. He felt that Florencio with all his family and their children would provide a better environment for Felicitas’ formation. Amatlan held no family ties for Juan to depend on. San Miguel was a larger town with paved streets and merchants. It was more like a small city compared to Amatlan which was strictly agriculture and cattle. In Amatlan, most homes had corals to house the work horses, barn yard animals, chickens, and the occasional hog. The streets were very dusty and consisted primarily of two dirt mule trails that about 30 kilometers in length. These trails wound around and around up and down the mountains leading to a beautiful valley with a river flowing through it on the edge of town, but it was remote and isolated. Amatlan was a place where Felicitas would later return to.

5: So the years passed and Felicitas, surrounded by so many members of the Gonzalez family, was growing into a beautiful young lady. Tío Florencio had become Papa Florencio. Due to the political turmoil in Mexico caused by Carranza, Obregon Zapata, and Villa all at odds with one another there was much violence and many deaths. As a result many Mexicans were immigrating to the United States to look for work and escape the violence. Florencio thought he would take his family to Miami Florida to escape the civil unrest, but Juan found out and went to San Miguel to return Felicitas to Amatlan. Felicitas was now 13. She does not remember how old she was when she went for the first time to San Miguel, but she loved her family and the town. Juan and Felicitas rode the mules toward Amatlan but she did not have any memory of Amatlan and this was an unwelcome adventure. Juan told her that it would only be for the month of May when there is all the wild fruit that is so popular in the region. As they traveled up and down the winding trails it seemed they would never reach their destination. Felicitas was a bit out spoken for those days when parents were to not be questioned. When she would ask “when will we be there”? Juan would say “ya vamos” or “we’re getting there”. Finally they began their descent and saw a glimpse of the village in a small valley. Felicitas was not impressed and asked “this is Amatlan”? San Miguel was more sophisticated than Amatlan. In later years Felicitas would later relate the story and tell how she had often felt as though Amatlan would be her tomb. “It was like putting me in a box,” she would say as she her shoulders slumped. She would continue that the month of May came and went and she asked her father, “Papa? Cuando me va llevar San Miguel?’’ (when are you taking me to San Miguel?). His response was simply a shrug of his shoulders as he said “not yet”. This continued until one day he told her that he would not be returning. Her heart dropped but she said, one day God will help me get out of this place. In San Miguel there had always been chores to do, but in Amatlan there were many more. Water had to be drawn from the well, washing clothes in the river, gathering wood, the smell of barnyard animals and dust, and a relationship with her stepmother that was not friendly. For those of you that are young, it may be hard to picture, but there was no electricity, running water, refrigeration or ice boxes, no radio, no cars, no television, or even indoor toilet. Many conveniences we take for granted today they did without. In San

6: Miguel, Felicitas had gone to school but only to learn to read and write it. In those days it was not looked upon as necessary for women to be too educated. Life was hard for the men but even harder for the women who were trained to be submissive. Submission was not one of Felicitas’ best traits, but in spite of the hard physical work she developed into a most beautiful woman. She did not need to wear makeup even though there was not much available, she was a natural beauty. A young man, Aucensio Becerra Ortiz was overcome with this budding young beauty. Ausencio lived with his father, Concepcion Becerra Rosas and mother, Victoria Ortiz Quintero. Their home was in the neighborhood called El Cacao along the river. It was situated on a large parcel of land with many fruit trees of all kinds. Ausencio had seven living siblings and once he and Felicitas were wed, they were to become her family as well. Ausencio was a rice farmer and he cultivated the family land with horse and plow. As a result of the manual labor, Ausencio he had quite a physique. Together, Ausencio and Felicitas made a very handsome couple, but Ausencio had a reputation for drink and women and Juan was not too happy with his daughter choice. The day came for the wedding; Felicitas was 19 and Ausencio 25. They were married in a simple ceremony without the celebrations that usually take place. The bride wore borrowed shoes and a borrowed dress. It was not the white wedding gown every girl dreams of. The ceremony took place in the sacristy of the church of Jesus Nazareno on the 28th of May, 1931. The couple took a honeymoon to Ameca, Jalisco, most likely on horseback. They lived in the early part of their marriage with Ausencio’s parents; Concepcion and Victoria, until they took a small adobe house no more than 2 rooms. Their small home was just down from the in laws Mexico was becoming industrialized but the rural areas were still without cars or roads that could serve them to create commerce on a larger scale, they were to remain impoverished for years to come. Immigration to the United States was occurring on a larger scale. Yet amidst all this, the adobe house must have been blessed by the God of Fertility. The first born child to Felicitas and Ausencio was a girl. They gave her the name Guadalupe, after the most venerated title of Mary, given after the revolution against the Spanish was led by a priest Fr. Hidalgo carrying a banner of Guadalupe. Lupe, as we know her, was born March 3rd, 1932. Soon to follow was another girl they named her Elisa born June 14, 1933. The birth of

7: another daughter followed on December 12, 1934. They named her Enedina but she died in infancy. In 1933 Ausencio had a son out of wedlock. His name was Jesus but due to the rules of the day he was not able to take the family name. In 1934 Felicitas suffered yet another emotional blow, her father died. With Juan’s passing, Felicitas took possession of her inheritance and the family moved to a nicer home closer to the plaza. Living closer to the plaza made trips to the market easier for Felicitas but proved to be a big distraction for Ausencio. He had access to more drinking pals as well as women. With the death of her Father, her Mother banished, and Ausencio’s frequent absence, Felicitas was left alone to raise her children. America was calling because in 1935 Concepcion took his sons, Juan, Ausencio, and Manuel along with his daughters, Cleotilde, and Catalina to California. Manul Ortiz, a cousin of Ausencio’s also left with them. Felicitas did not have extended family in Amatlan as she had in San Miguel, and now her husband and his family were gone too. She had said that God would help her get out and it seemed that the time would finally come. Oakland seemed a popular place there were people that had gone in years before and Felicitas thought it was best to go where there were family connections. Felicitas’ new family would eventually be her salvation. Ausencio had developed a liking for the North and decide that he didn’t want to return to his fields, or his family. Felicitas waited for letters from her Husband from America. The Cristero movement had stopped the mail in order to interfere with government correspondence. Amatlan was the county seat and all legal documents for the county were registered there. So Felicitas would walk 33 kilometers to San Marcos to see if there was a letter from her husband, they never came. It was no surprise. Ausencio would frequently go out with other women and had started to spend her inheritance. He had lost his own land in gambling debts. In that time, men ruled the home and the finances, but Felicitas was proud and determined she would not allow him to squander her inheritance. Felicitas had inherited two houses as well and decided to sell one house and divide the other into two apartments. In doing this she could live on one side and rent the other. Having lived in San Miguel gave her a different outlook on life, she was not so reliant on the man in her life and was far more self sufficient than many women of her time.

8: The sale of the first house allowed Felicitas to finance a trip to the States in 1937. It was necessary to pay a Coyote (a smuggler of humans) to help her make the illegal crossing into the US. Later she would tell of the time she held Lupe in one arm and Elisa in the other as they slid down a steep bluff. But eventually she did make it to Oakland to be with Ausencio. She found work in one of the several canneries located in Oakland. She settled in West Oakland, on Lewis Street,in a basement flat. This flat, like the adobe house in Amatlan, must also have been blessed by the God of fertility because on March 29, 1939, Roberto, their first son, was born. Felicitas would soon find that she was pregnant again, but one Americano was enough and she decided this next child would be born in Mexico. She was certain that Ausencio would return to Amatlan to be with his family, but Ausencio was not to set foot in Mexico again. This all occurred during the end of the depression. Oakland had a lot of winos and hobos, whites that had escaped the dust bowl and had become depressed and had not recovered. Ausencio had become hooked on alcohol and was not a good provider. Felicitas was pregnant, with two toddler daughters and a newborn son, yet she returned to Amatlan. She delivered a daughter on December 14, 1940 whom she also named Enedina. Enedina #2 also died in infancy. This was a terrible blow. Felicitas had been forced to endure much sadness and many disappointments. She prayed to Jesus Nazareno to give her strength. Again Felicitas waited for Ausencio or for letters and there was nothing. But Cleotilde , Aucencios’ older sister was also strong and understood being disappointed in men, and she encouraged Felicitas to return to the states. Cleotilde had also had purchased a house on Union Street near 5th Street and as a property owner she could sponsor Felicitas, Lupe, and Elisa’s legal immigration; Roberto was a natural born citizen. Cleotilde opened a family style restaurant in her home. She known known to be a party girl, but also a strong woman who could support herself. In addition to the restaurant, Cleotilde also worked at a container company. On December 7th 1941 the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. America was soon embroiled in a war. Mexicans were seeking immigration and America needed. The able bodied American men were drafted and others joined voluntarily to fight the war. Their absence depleted the work force. For Mexican immigrants this meant there was a lot of employment available. Felicitas finally realized it was fruitless to wait for her husbands’ return and accepted Cleotildes’ offer of immigration. She sold one half of the remaining house she kept in

9: Amatlan to so she and the children could await their quota in Nogales, Arizona. It was a long year; Felicitas ran out of money and had to beg for food to feed her family. But finally their turn came up in 1943 and she was once again in Oakland. With all the men off to war the Southern Pacific Railroad yards located in Oakland needed women to do the work that men had been doing before the war. She and other women from Amatlan, as well as locals, were oiling rail switches and cleaning passenger cars. They wore coveralls like Rosie the Riveter the famous war poster. Felicitas was to have steady work and could support her family. She sold the other half of the house in Amatlan for 500 U.S. dollars and put a down payment on a pair of flats on Filbert Street. The flats were near 5th Street in West Oakland near the railroad tracks, an area that has since been torn down. There was a family living down stair so she and her family occupied the upstairs. It seemed that things were getting better but Ausencio was becoming hard to live with. Felicitas sought a divorce. This was a brave action on her part. The divorce would be a terrible blow but she needed peace in her life, and by divorcing Ausencio she could be the steady provider to her brood. At this point I will reveal that it is I, Roberto, that am relating this story of my Mom to the best of my recollection. The divorce was granted; Ausencio was not granted custody of the children though he insisted that we wanted to be with him. I remember standing in the middle of the glass enclosed porch with our parents at opposite ends, My Mother stood with her arms folded as Dad beckoned us with hand gestures to go to him. We chose Mom. Mom took boarders to help with finances. She housed Braceros that were part of a new work program in California, men with temporary immigration permits to work. There were 3 or 4 that rented a room and one was Lazaro Chavira Valencia. Lazaro had brought the first car into Amatlan. He had worked as a chauffeur in the neighboring town of Etztlan, Jalisco and had come to Oakland to earn money to support his family in Mexico The war with Japan continued and all of Europe was at war, it was World War II. Economically America was to lift it-self up from The Great Depression. Shipyards and many businesses flourished in the need to supply the war effort. There had been rationing of food and air raids, sirens would sound and windows were covered at night to prevent enemy planes from spotting the ground. News paper vendors would hock the latest news yelling “Extra! Extra! Read all about It, Japs attack” and other colorful headlines. In those days there

10: was no political correctness. One day in June Lupe, Elisa, and myself were sent away overnight and when we returned we had a new sister. Esther was born June 24th, 1945 at home on Filbert Street. Lazaro did not return to Mexico to his family instead he stayed with Felicitas in Oakland. Three months later the war came to an end in September 1945. The other braceros had gone before Esther’s birth. Perhaps they had sensed the new relationship between Felicitas and Lazaro. Would there be stability and happiness in her life? Had her prayers be answered? Both Felicitas and Lazaro had employment. He had found work at a lumber company and life was not as full of burdens as it had once been. There had been so many struggles that Felicitas had faced on her own. On May 17, 1946 Manuela, whom we know as Nellie, was born. Still we lived on Filbert Street. Later, I don’t remember why, we moved to 44th Avenue to a house that was owned by Don Jesus Caro Grado. Don Jesus was Nellie’s Godfather. We lived down stairs and he lived upstairs, we were renters. Life continued and seemed normal; soon on February 16, 1949 Teresa was born. Teresa was premature; she was born at 7 months and could fit in a woman’s shoe box. Television was making its debut, although there were not many programs and viewers watched through magnifying glasses over the small screens. We did not own the first models as they were too expensive. Mom bought a house on east 10th Street and we were to move again. Again we lived downstairs and she rented the upstairs to a tenant named Janette. Janette had a young son and her husband was in the military. And again our family continued to grow. On July 30th 1950, Cristina was born. The house on 10th Street backed up to a part of the Del Monte cannery located in a pleasant neighborhood populated by people of mostly Portuguese descent. In West Oakland our parish had been St. Joseph’s, which offered Spanish and English services; but now we lived in Mary Help of Christians’ parish with service in Portuguese and English. The God of fertility visited for the last time and twin boys were born on November 4th, 1951. They were named Juan and Antonio Chavira. The house on 10th was larger than all the others had been, but soon we outgrew it. Mom never refused anyone a helping hand and we had many people live with us off and on; Tio Valente, another Bracero from Amatlan, he was married to the youngest sister of Teodora Aguayo, Moms mother. They lived in Amatlan but with us for a while. Felicitas had heard that her mother Teodora who had lived all over the west coast of Mexico, always working in

11: restaurants, was at the border in Estacion Cuervos near Mexicali living in a hovel. Felicitas reached out to her and went to visit her for a reunion. When Felicitas saw the deplorable conditions that her mother was living she invited her to visit us in Oakland. Abuelita came up and Mom convinced her not to return, saying that she would have a better life with us. Teodora, who we knew as “abuelita’’ never officially emigrated and vowed to be buried in Mexico. She loved to listen to the Mexican radio station and when she would hear the song Mexico lindo y querido she would sing along at the top of her lungs. The song says “My beloved Mexico if I die away from you, let them say I’m only asleep till I’m returned”. Abuelita was a great help to Felicitas and cared for the home while she worked. Before her Mother moved in, Felicitas paid housekeepers to come in daily to care for the home and look after her children, it took most of her salary. This arrangement with Teodora was better for everyone. In 1951 Elisa married and left home and Lupe soon followed. After Teodora had settled in, a friend of hers Carmen Duarte and her adolescent son came to live with us. Carmen was a strikingly beautiful woman from Michoacán. She went to work for a tortilla factory, patting them out by hand. She was my Grandmother Theodora’s pal. We didn’t have a lot of clothes, the closets were full of mattresses that we rolled out every night because of the people Mom would take in. She was so generous to others because she always remembered her own struggles. Felicitas was frugal, she had to be; her salary was small. When we lived on Filbert Street she bought me a red wagon but it was not for playing with. She bought it was so I could meet her and Lazaro at the Swans Market on 10th street and do the shopping when she got paid. They would buy sacks of potatoes, beans, rice, and flour so that when money ran out there would be something to eat. Seldom did we have meat. When we did have a chicken it would be made into soup with lots of broth and veggies for lunch and Mom would make other dishes with slivers of the meat to last until dinner. Mom learned to make flour tortillas because they were easier than corn and kept longer. Sometimes there was only rice for the main meal. She cooked it in many different ways, casserole style and we would say “rice again”? Mom would always say she was sorry. It must have hurt her greatly to hear us gripe. She always served everyone, now I understand why; if she hadn’t there would not be enough food for everyone. She would serve small dishes but said, “You can have more but, let’s not waste food”. She would always eat last and finish what was left

12: by others. For the same reason she made our school lunches every night. In the summer when Hermelinda Casillas and her husband Chon would work the harvest in the ranch that belonged to the Small family, Mom would farm us out to work to earn money to buy our clothes for school. It was also a good healthy experience for us. We would pick apricots, prunes, grapes, and sometimes hops used for brewing beer. We were paid .20 cents a box for picking prunes; it took two large buckets to fill one box. Elisa and Lupe were very good at competing with the handsome Topetes and Iglesias boys from Amatlan whose families had immigrated to Oakland. We were on our knees all day in the hot sun picking, and every evening Linda would make us kneel to pray the Rosary, in retrospect it did not harm us. One day Felicitas got a notice that the cannery was planning an expansion. They were offering to purchase the homes in the neighborhood for what they thought the properties were worth. All our neighbors agreed to sell but Mom did not want to. They told her if she did not sell they would build around her she would be the only one left. She accepted their price as I recall it was about $10,000.00 and then we moved to a very nice house on 63rd Avenue. The house had a front porch, a roomy floor plan; there was also a garage and a cellar. Shortly after purchasing the home, she lost her job. This was a terrible disappointment, Felictas had no skills, very little education, and times had changed. Jobs had once been plentiful but now they were scarce. The women at the laundry as well as at Southern Pacific wanted to join a union. Felicitas was opposed; she feared the company would fire them. They badgered her to vote with them and Felicitas regrets it to this very day. The company did not fire them but consolidated the laundry service. The jobs were relocated to Los Angeles the service in Oakland. Mom looked for work and could not find a job. As it turned out, she did have a skill; she could cook. People were always complementing her cooking. She thought she would open a restaurant. Her first attempt was a lunch counter café on East 14th Street. It was small maybe 7 stools but it was constantly busy. She knew it was not a mistake and when a Chinese restaurant went up for sale just up the block from the lunch counter, she that qas her chance to expand. She took the lease and renamed the restaurant Mala Suerte, [Bad Luck]. She felt the name should reflect the cards she had been dealt. Lazaro had a disability that prevented him from working but he could run errands and give moral support, and the kids all helped. She continued to be generous and the kids all

13: helped. She continued to be generous and took in a son of Ausencio’s sister Aurelia that still lived in Mexico. His name was Jose Parra Becerra. She helped him immigrate and finish high school. Later, for a short time, Jorge Avelar Becerra, son of Josefina another sister of Ausencio’s also came to live. Felicitas had not changed her feelings toward Ausencio’s family even though they had divorced. She still considered them family. Mala Suerte was located at 9314 East 14th Street, in East Oakland and provided Mom a lot of security, but the hours were long and she worked a seven day week. When she was pregnant she would have to stand for work and worked up until delivery, even then she only stayed home 40 days [cuarentena] a Mexican custom for healing, and would then return to work. When she had time at home she went to bed exhausted. She stood so long her feet always hurt and she developed painful bunions, but she never gave in. When she had divorced, the attorney suggested to her that she should seek public assistance, she was offended, and gave thanks to God that she had the strength to work. Mom would make sure we went to church even though she was too busy and tired to go herself. “I’ll feed you breakfast after you go to communion” she would say. Each Sunday she would give each of us a dime for the collection. Once I questioned her, “why if we had so little money did she give”? She said, “we are poor! But there are people that have less”! She viewed it as giving alms through the church. Mom also had a God daughter named Ramona in Amatlan that suffered from Epilepsy and in need of financial assistance. Until Ramona died 2 years ago Mom gave her money every month. And every time I would go to Mexico for a visit, she would send me with money for the church or Tio Valente Tapia, the widower brother in law of her mother Teodora. Mom never forgot how life was in Mexico for her and that there were people still struggling. There was a woman, Doña Matiana who was a washer woman in Amatlan. My mother befriended her and let her live in a room alongside her home in Amatlan. Doña Matiana had no family in Amatlan and she did laundry at the river for others. When she took ill Mom sent money. When she passed away, Mom sent money for her burial as well. When I was about 10 years of age my Mom sent me to live with Doña Josefina Garcia, a Mexican native of El Paso Texas that had befriended my Mom at the laundry. Herr Husband had died she was alone with no other family and Mom wanted to support her in her solitude. I lived with her for about one year. She also lived on Union Street near my aunt Cleotilde’s, house but my aunt had died in the 40’s.

14: Mom tells of the Time that her dad, Juan, had business to do in Puerto Vallarta and he took her with him. They rode the mules over the mountains following the river that flows from Ameca to Vallarta near Amatlan. She was excited to see the ocean for the first time. She must have been about 14. Juan had made her ride side saddle and it made the journey tedious. When they arrived she could see the palm thatched huts that lined the beaches, she thought it was a very romantic sight. But Juan never let her go near the beaches because some men would bath naked or in under wear. He thought it would not be proper for her to see this. It was not until she was in her 60’ that I invited her on a trip to Amatlan and we flew via Vallarta. We stayed at a beach hotel and that evening had a drink at the outdoor bar that faced the ocean. It was beautiful and you could see the reflection of the moon on the ocean. She had waited a life time to see this beach again. Growing up we don’t ever remember Mom going to a party night club, or a restaurant for dinner. There was always work to be done and obligations at home. But always, even though she had a small income, she was generous. On January 24th 1961, Ausencio died and although she had a new life and was divorced for many years she participated in putting him to rest. We, Ausencio’s children; Lupe, Elisa, and I were in no position to purchase a private plot. Mom paid for it. She said, “I can’t allow the father of my children to be buried in a paupers plot”. I believe she paid for the marker as well. Life continued. America had gone through the Korean Campaign, as it was called since it was never officially declared a war, and then Vietnam. Our brother Juan was drafted to serve in the Vietnam war. We were fortunate that he was able to return home, when so many others did not. Then came the cold with The Soviet Union and America put a man on the moon. Our technology gave us the computer, and eventually cell phones, and even electric cars. As Felicitas’ children grew up and spread their wings, they one by one left home. Juan is the only one who remains at home with Mom, and we are all so grateful to him. He provides comfort and companionship for Mom who was to also bury Lazaro when he died September 28, 1982. Much has changed and the little dusty town of Amatlan has been exposed to it all. Thanks to technology Amatlan is no longer as isolated, how can it be if people in Amatlan have access to internet cafes and Facebook? Our family continues to grow and change. In time nothing will remain the same except this small accounting of the life of Felicitas Gonzalez Aguayo.

15: Thank you, Felicitas, for the love and protection you provided for us through life’s difficult times. We love you and celebrate the 100 years God has given you, and the life we have gained through you. As we enter the next 100 years, who knows how large our family will grow, or how many new members will not have seen or touched you. But you can be sure that you will always be remembered, for this day and for many years to come. We love and embrace the new land you have adopted, but cling also to our heritage. When we hear the mariachi’s play Las Mañanitas it brings tears of joy and fond memories. Our family names will not let us forget who we are and from whence we came. Felicitas you will forever live in our hearts and memories. What may have begun as your “mala suerte”, has become our “buena suerte”. Happy Birthday Mom! We love you! Roberto Becerra Gonzalez July 12, 2012 Oakland, California.

16: Teodora Aguayo and Juan Gonzalez Wedding Day 1908/9 | Felicitas Gonzalez Aguayo Born July 10, 1912 | Felicitas Possible Wedding Day Photo | Felicitas The beauty that Ausencio fell in love with.

17: Southern Pacific Rail yard. Oakland, CA 1941 | Newly arrived in the US. May 1937. Sacramento, CA. L. Catalina w/ her children Loreta & Frank. C. Felicitas and Ausencio w/ Lupe R. Cleotilde w/ Elisa. | Felicitas at Mala Suerte | Felicitas' business card. Mala Suerte Restautant, Oakland, CA

18: Teodora Aguayo Ciudad Cuervo, Mexican Boarder 1954 | Felicitas and Teodora

19: Lazaro Chavira and Felicitas Mala Suerte Restaurant, Oakland, CA | Lazaro and Felicitas

20: Luke 1:46-55 Engrandece mi alma al Señor; Y mi espíritu se alegró en Dios mi Salud, porque miró a la bajeza de su criada; Porque he aquí, desde ahora me dirán bienaventurada todas las generaciones. Porque me ha hecho grandes cosas el Poderoso; y santo es su Nombre. Y su misericordia de generación a generación a los que le temen. Hizo valentía con su brazo; esparció los soberbios del pensamiento de su corazón. Quitó los poderosos de los tronos, y levantó a los humildes. A los hambrientos colmó de bienes; y a los ricos envió vacíos. Recibió a Israel su criado, acordándose de la misericordia. Como habló a nuestros padres, a Abraham y a su simiente para siempre. - A,men.

23: Our most treasured family heirlooms are our sweet family memories.

33: "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow."

42: Family

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