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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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EWU profs show college ‘firsts’ can change destiny of family

Martin Meraz-Garcia would drive his mother to the Tri-Cities fields at 4:30 in the morning and together they picked cherries and his nose would bleed, stinging with pesticides, and he would think back to his childhood in Mexico, one of 14 children, the son of a murdered father, and how he worked shining shoes in the street until the family moved to the United States, and he was teased so ruthlessly his first day in sixth grade that he told his mother he would never return, and she insisted he go back, and then one day as a teen in the orchards he realized that even if he were the fastest cherry picker in the world, he would never rise out of this poverty. He decided that day to be anything but a field worker.

Census shows growing Latino population in Eastern Washington

When Ana Zaragoza Mandziara moved to the Spokane area last summer, her first impression of her new home was, “Where are all the Mexicans?” Latino population in Washington does not come close to that of her native California, but her adopted state has seen a 71 percent increase in residents of Hispanic origin since 2000, according to newly released U.S. Census Bureau figures.