What Hispanic heritage means to me

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Mika Taylor and her family of USAG Yongsan, South Korea
Mika Taylor and her family of USAG Yongsan, South Korea

What Hispanic heritage means to me

by: . | .
Stripes Okinawa | .
published: October 08, 2013

Editor’s note: We asked you, our readers across the Pacific, to tell us what you thought of Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15 to Oct. 15). Here is what we learned.

Every year at Sullivans Elementary School  we go to the movie theater and watch many classes do many traditional Mexican dances. It is really fun for me to learn about the dances. I love when I hear trumpets and guitars all around me. Although the dances are very cheerful and happy, many things happened to Mexicans. Just like the segregation that happened in America almost 50 years ago, Mexicans were protesting for equality. Americans weren’t treating them well. I am glad they get equal treatment now. I can’t imagine what would happen if they still didn’t get equal treatment. I also love their foods. Tacos, tortillas, and quesadillas are some of my favorites. Hispanic Heritage Month means a lot to me, even though I am not Mexican, Hispanic Heritage Month is a great way to share about many famous Mexicans who have changed us a lot.
– Kristi Bhatterai, 4th grade, The Sullivans School, Yokosuka Naval Base

Hispanic Heritage Month means celebration to me! My favorite Hispanic food is enchiladas. They are basically chicken and cheese tacos with melted cheese on top with enchilada sauce. Enchilada sauce is sort of spicy gravy but better! I also love El Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) It’s when loved ones go to their ancestor’s  graves and put flowers and food down, etc. I do it myself in my household! This is what Hispanic Heritage Month means to me!
– Mae Orlosky, 4th grade, The Sullivans School, Yokosuka Naval Base

Hispanic Heritage Month means celebration to me! My favorite Hispanic food is enchiladas. They are basically chicken and cheese tacos with melted cheese on top with enchilada sauce. Enchilada sauce is sort of spicy gravy but better! I also love El Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) It’s when loved ones go to their ancestor’s  graves and put flowers and food down, etc. I do it myself in my household! This is what Hispanic Heritage Month means to me!
– Mae Orlosky, 4th grade, The Sullivans School, Yokosuka Naval Base

When I think of Hispanic Heritage I think of colorful colors, I also think of the celebrations they have and what they do at them. Here at The Sulivans School, we go to the Benny Decker theater to watch classes dance to Hispanic songs. 
– Atsar Williams, 5th grade, The Sullivans School, Yokosuka Naval Base

Hispanic Heritage Month is a fun celebration. These are some of the things that people do on Hispanic Heritage Month:  They eat tacos and tamales and chili. They dance Hispanic dances and celebrate the Dia De Los Muertes, or Day of the Dead. This is how they celebrate it: They make skulls and do face paintings of skulls. Some people make cakes and pies and many treats for their friends and family. Then I think that they go to the grave yard and (pray for) the dead.  I have a friend that is Hispanic and she does face painting with her family. Hispanic people celebrate Christmas also. Feliz Navidad!
– Alexis Wiley, 4th grade, The Sullivans School, Yokosuka Naval Base

I like all the types of different holidays like Cinco De Mayo. I also like the food like tacos and rice. There is a day at school that we go to the Benny Decker Theater. We go there to watch people dance. It is fun.
– Christopher Kati, 4th grade, The Sullivans School, Yokosuka Naval Base

My aunt is my mom’s sister and she married a Hispanic man. I’m not sure what his real name is, but we call him Jose, John and Marty. Every year we visit them on Cinco De Mayo.  My aunt makes tacos, enchiladas, and burritos with my mom. We also sometimes visit them a week before the Day of the Dead. We sing and dance! It’s lots of fun!  The most important part is when we all say hello to my great, great grandfather who fought  in World War II. My favorite part is when we eat sugar skulls. I love sugar skulls! So, Hispanic Heritage means to me what it means to everyone else, family, friends, fun food, and most of all, tradition.
– Jacqueline Reeves, 4th grade, The Sullivans School, Yokosuka Naval Base

This is what Hispanic Heritage Month means to me: My favorite Hispanic foods are tacos and tamales. Hispanic Heritage Month is very special to me because I am part Hispanic. My grandpa was Hispanic so that means I am part Hispanic.
– Makamae, 4th grade, The Sullivans School, Yokosuka Naval Base

I am the proud daughter of my Peruvian mother Katherine. In my veins runs Inca and Basque blood. Basque women are strong women, who show determination and strength above all of their characteristics. Culturally, these women are the matriarchs of their family. Inca women are gifted with the qualities of wisdom, pride and passion for religion and their family. …

Along with my Hispanic roots, I also have Native American, German-Jewish and Scottish heritage from my dad’s side of the family.  My family and I have also lived in England, Japan, Germany and the United States.  Growing up with so many different perspectives on life, I feel like my home is a mini-melting pot.  It has given me an open mind to all people.

I want to make a difference in life by using the good parts of all my cultures and improve the lives of the people and community around me.
– Mika Taylor, 12, U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan, South Korea