This past weekend, I returned to my home town to participate in a 6k run/walk my sister organized for our Daddy who has been struggling with cancer since 2006. The event took place in Canutillo, Texas where Daddy was raised and where most of my family live to this day.
Canutillo is not a beautiful town.
At least…before this past weekend I did not think it was.
But as I ran along the narrow streets lined with humble homes and shops, my heart began to swell with pride. THIS was where my family worked hard to survive and thrive! THIS was where my deaf grandmother raised 16 children in a two room house! THIS is where Momma and Daddy met! THIS was where my sisters and I were brought into the world! THIS was where I ran a race and came to appreciate my roots!
I am proud to be a Carrasco because we are a family that loves and cares for one another.
And I am proud to have come from Canutillo, Texas because it is a place where very beautiful things have taken and will continue to take place.
For those of you who have never been to Canutillo, here is a “photo album” from the event:
Momma used to take my sisters and I to this park all the time when we were little. The merry-go-round was our favorite, but, unfortunately, it was removed from the park because it was “too dangerous.”
Since it was a chilly morning, my uncles and nephew made sure to bundle up in their warmest Dallas Cowboys garb.
For the record, if a Carrasco male is not wearing some sort of Cowboy attire, then he is not a Carrasco…
…with the exception of Uncle Ritchie.
He is a Redskins fan.
“Matthew, stand in front of Tio Ritchie, will you?” Uncle Danny suggests.
My nieces made signs for the walkers to carry.
In reference to the sign on the left, “Grandpa Boots” is what my nieces and nephews call Daddy because of his fetish for colorful boots.
Plenty of family and friends came out to support my Daddy’s cause despite the 8am start and chilly weather.
One of the first “stops” in the route was this house. Momma and Daddy moved onto this lot in the late 1970’s.
I spent the first five years of my life in this trailer park. After we moved, the new owners began building onto the property resulting this very mismatched piece of architecture.
Cascading blankets of clouds covered up the mountains.
I miss getting to see these mountains every day.
The Rio Grande.
This is the driest I have ever seen this river.
Canutillo Elementary School.
Many Carrasco children have attended this school.
This is the house where Daddy and his sixteen brothers and sisters grew up.
My uncle Danny moved in after my Grandma died and has since remodeled the former 2-bedroom house.
This sign hangs above the door.
Daddy was too weak to participate, but he stood outside Danny’s house to watch the runners and walkers pass by.
I’ve never stopped to take pictures with relatives in the middle of a race before. What a pleasant “change of pace.”
Leslie and I enjoy a post-race pose with Carlos, one of my favorite uncles.
I’ve run in several memorable races before, but none of them have come close to being as special as the one I ran for my Daddy. A week before the event, I injured my groin and was worried that I wouldn’t be able to run in it. But thanks to ice and stretches and raw stubbornness, I ran strong.
May Daddy continue to do the same!
Long live Tury Bumper!!
(That’s Daddy’s pen name.)