San Antonio

Sandra Gonzalez


By: Voces Staff

Sandra Gonzalez is a registered nurse based in San Antonio. Her focus is on pregnant women, new mothers and their newborns. However, COVID-19 has brought changes to her work environment that affect how she practices health care. She uses the same preventive measures outside of the workplace to continue as a mother and mariachi musician in the age of distance learning and social distancing. 

Irma Nicolás


By Jenan Taha

Emilio Nicolas Sr.


By the Voces Staff

Growing up in a northern Mexican mining town, Emilio Nicolás sat by his father's side listening to short-wave radio reports from the United States describing the advance of Allied troops across Europe during World War II.

Carlos Rudolph Quijano Sr.


By Stephanie De Luna

Carlos R. Quijano, a native of San Antonio’s west side, never imagined that his future would include world travel and achievements most people couldn’t accomplish in two lifetimes. Over 23 years, he served in both the Marines and Air Force and participated in military operations in Korea and Vietnam.

Charles Paul Jones


By Catherine Murphy

Growing up in San Antonio, Texas, Charles Paul Jones was no stranger to diversity. Jones’ neighborhood on the west side of town included Belgians, Germans, Hispanics, Italians and Lebanese.

“It was a Brooklyn Southwest, for lack of a better term,” Jones said. “We all learned about each other’s culture. … Everybody on the block got along.” He valued the experience of growing up in such a dynamic culture.

Elva Alicia Medrano Rodriguez


By Jazmin Sanchez, California State University, Fullerton

When loved ones go to war, it is not easy for those who are left behind. Religious faith helps some endure the experience.

Elva Alicia Medrano Rodriguez's brother, Camilo, served in the Vietnam War and rarely sent letters home. To cope with her brother’s absence, Rodriguez, a vocational nurse, turned to prayer and focused on her work with terminal patients.

Raul Portales


By Jordan D. Schraeder

Working at Dodson’s Grocery in 1943, Raul “Roy” Portales dreamed of sailing the high seas. That year, the San Antonio native found a way to make that dream a reality: enlistment in the U.S. Navy. After three years of stocking and delivering groceries, Portales’ enlistment in the Navy on July 7, 1943, offered a change of scenery.

Eduardo Cavazos Garza


By Emily Macrander

"I'm a new man."

Eduardo Cavazos Garza was speaking to himself, or out loud. He wasn't sure and didn't really care. He was on a boat, floating down another South Vietnam river. It was the summer of 1969. He was in his early 20s. His life's possessions were in his army issue duffle. He was a combat engineer, trained to operate explosives, help out infantrymen and kill.

Arturo Ramirez


By Grant Abston

As a sophomore at La Salle High School in San Antonio, Texas, Arturo Ramirez stood out from his classmates.

Ramirez already had a working history that spanned many years. He had worked alongside his father cleaning offices at the Union Stockyards in San Marcos, northeast of San Antonio, since he was eight years old. The work day sometimes began at 4 a.m. before school. He had also worked landscaping for two years before taking a job at a bowling alley on the south side of town during his sophomore year.

Juan Mejia


By Frank Trejo

From childhood poverty in South Texas through the Battle of the Bulge, one of World War II's bloodiest conflicts, Juan Mejia proved he was a survivor.

Mejia's wartime experiences included being listed as missing-in-action for a time, but he said it never occurred to him that he might die.

"The closest I got was when a piece of shrapnel fell on me here on my coat," he said. "I just did this, brushed it off."