It was a great honor to have the privilege of creating the 2018-2019 Tucson Sector Migrant Quilt. In collaboration with Gerry Murano, I put the 137 names received from the Pima County Coroner’s Office, on a field of migrant denim taken from the desert, in a traditional quilting pattern, “Rail Fence.”
I added an actual rail fence, and below it put some of the reasons why so many of the migrants hazard such a dangerous journey. The words above the fence are some of the hopes that I imagine they have for a new life in America.
Lastly, 137 butterflies symbolize each soul on their final journey, no longer hungry, scared and despairing. I think about these men and women frequently!
I want to thank Jody and Peggy so much for this wonderful project which tells the tale of these travelers throughout the country. It makes a difference when one can humanize the people.
I was honored to be asked to contribute to the Migrant Quilt Project. I believe it takes something remarkable and frightening for people to risk everything and leave their home country, so at the Postal History Foundation in Tucson, I located stamps from the homelands these migrants left and incorporated them as part of their stories. As I have had the privilege since March 2018, of helping serve many of the migrants who were fortunate and arrived safely at the Casa Alitas shelter, memorializing these lost ones holds a special meaning for me.