Mario R. Vazquez —

From the book

Thank you for stopping by June 30 and visiting Mario at the seminar about neighborhood pride and community involvement.
The Casa de la Cultura, 302 Cantu Steet, Del Rio

Casa de la Cultura



Mario From The Barrio

by Mario R. Vazquez

My journey from the historic
San Felipe Barrio of Del Rio, Texas to the
Oval Office of the White House

Mario was raised in a Texas Barrio. This book chronicles his incredible journey from the Mexican American barrio of San Felipe, in Del Rio Texas, to saluting General Douglas MacArthur in Tokyo, Japan.

Vazquez details his Civil Rights involvement with iconic figures such as Dr. Hector Garcia. Years later he found himself in the Oval Office of the White House meeting with President Lyndon B. Johnson.

Mario's true story of how a young Mexican American kid from a south Texas barrio became connected with so many historical individuals will inspire generations. —Dave Gutierrez, author


Book printed in the USA and the UK.

154 pages, 6" x 9"
ISBN: 978-1-61170-252-1

Published by: Robertson Publishing (RP)

Mario From The Barrio

Purchase "Mario from the Barrio" from Ingram Books, or from any of the links below:

Mario R. Vazquez



Mario R. Vazquez was born and raised in the historic San Felipe Barrio in the divided city of Del Rio, Texas. He was educated in the segregated San Felipe Independent School District.

He served in the U. S. Army during the Occupation of Japan for two and a half years. He moved to California and attended San Jose State University.

Mario was a Supervisor in the Engineering Services Department of the Santa Clara Valley Water Distritc and raised two daughters. He is now retired and enjoys traveling.

Mario is moving back to Del Rio, Texas, June 2017. You can contact him at: mariorv83@yahoo.com

From the book  ~ Copyright Material ~
TOC 1 TOC pg 2

Forward I Professor Antonio Carvajal

Mario Vazquez begins his story from San Felipe, a legendary Latino barrio, where he was born. In his early chapters, he depicts the barrio as a place where people were accepted and revered. It was a simple place where folks came together to celebrate the prosperity of wisdom and enjoyment of their precious Mexican culture.

In each subsequent chapter, the author takes the reader through remarkable places he lived throughout the country. In each of these places, he describes the various personal, professional, positive, and negative challenges he encounters.

It is in these encounters that Mario shares lessons he learned at each juncture of his difficult journey. Even though some experiences are tainted with blatant disrespect and disregard for the person he is, Mario rises above attitudes that exist in some of the ugly parts that have been, and unfortunately still are, present in the United States of America.

Forward II — Andy Porras, Free Lance Writer

Like Mario’s barrio nationally known high school museum (and only one of a handful), and it’s dicho that reminds its residents, present and former that, “Some things go on forever, like the sea, the wind and the spirit of San Felipe . . . “ - his book’s contents will go on forever.

No matter where ‘forever’ finds you. Abroad. In a different barrio. A far away borough, or in another chapter in the story of San Felipe, its people and icons. Mario’s ship, and its stories, has left the harbor and has set sail for eternity.

Mario, along with other fellow San Felipians, has given us one more mirror where our life is reflected. (Granted, some of the images were non-flattering, like the ones stating No Mexicans Allowed.) While not all of us former barrio dwellers ever saw those racist rotulos suffice to say that our parents and grandparents were the ones who helped tear them down by serving “their” country or taking on city halls that reflected no love for Hispanics and certainly by educating their children in one of the most unique school districts in the history of education in the U.S. of A. It was here we honed our activism skills and learned to care for our fellow human beings. It was here, within about a dozen streets square area that our envied Spirit of San Felipe first saw the light. And, and as this volume reflects, that light has never gone out!

Del Rio’s barrio folk, in many cases, were not even aware they fell below the poverty line or considered themselves depressed. There were much better things to plan or execute. Take the truck rides to the Golden State, at $25 a pop? What a bargain! And the great friendships forged along the way. Not to mention road romances! Consider Mario’s travels, all on Uncle Sam’s dime. More than likely, our boys and girls in uniform did not return to the U.S. of A. as monoglots. Not when you’re born with a Spanish language “chip” in your cabeza.

La Loma de la Cruz, La Plaza, El Sifón, La Piedra, etc. all memories ingrained in our bilingual brain come to life again. Mario’s bicultural brush paints San Felipe’s icons and offers them for us to enjoy and live some exciting moments again – like the danger of diving into very deep water or trespassing terrenos once belonging to our ancestors now known as Rancher White’s spread or Farmer Fred’s orchards.

Mario’s entries seem more like a trip down familiar lanes filled with friendly faces from the Bay Area to our beloved barrio. When he features a family (i.e. the Guardias, Calderones, etc.) your wannabe digital brain also rewinds and goes back in time to another era and soon recalls those same families and you begin repeat that time-honored phrase, “I wonder what ever happened to so and so?”

Mario opens the door to his life in this book. A life filled with both excitement and an education for many of us. Facts about an early San Felipe and its s/heroes are priceless. I guarantee that once you begin this literary excursion, you will be eager to turn page after page. It’s San Felipe-Friendly, Raza. It’s life in the barrio as lived by nuestra gente. In their own time. In their own way. Welcome aboard.
!Viva Mario! ¡Viva San Felipe!

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