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National City voter honors her father with first-ever vote

Patricia Gonzalez
Kitty Alvarado
/
KPBS
Patricia Gonzalez of National City voted for the first time on Nov. 8, 2022. She dedicated her vote to her father, Hernesto Gonzalez Rivera, a farmworker who died before fulfilling his dream of voting in America.

A cold and rainy day could not keep Patricia Gonzalez away from her local vote center in National City on Tuesday.

"It’s the first time I voted, and I feel really proud to have participated," Gonzalez said in Spanish. She said she became a citizen after living in the U.S. for 20 years.

On this day, she said she couldn‘t help but think of her father, Hernesto Gonzalez Rivera, a farmworker who came to the America to give his family a better life.

"He was able to become a resident, but he died shortly afterwards," she said.

She spoke about him with pride and described his sacrifice and generosity.

"I dedicate my vote to my father, who loved this country and who always dreamed of participating in an election. 'You did it! 'I voted for him," she said with a smile and a little giggle.

"Aqui estoy yo," she said, Spanish for, "Here I am." It was her way of telling her father she was representing him, fulfilling his dream.

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