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Latin American Sport Hall magazine

Latin American Sport Hall magazine

AboutThe Latin American
International Sports Hall of Fame

In the United States, there are Sports Halls of Fame that honor professional and amateur athletes
in football, basketball, track, tennis, baseball and other sports. There are also ethnic halls of fame
that recognize outstanding athletes from different groups including Italian, Jewish, Irish and
blacks to name a few.
But, there was not a single sports hall of fame that would recognize, honor and salute the
outstanding accomplishments1achievements and contributions of our Latino/Hispanic Sports
Heritage not only from the United States but also those who came to this country from Mexico,
Cuba, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Central and South America and from the vast talent from
the Caribbean Islands.
The Latin-American International Sports Hall of Fame/Salon de Ia Fama Latinoamericano del
Deporte was organized in Laredo, Texas in 1974. At first it was to celebrate, honor and promote
local and regional individuals who had excelled at their particular sport but soon it opened the
doors to include National and International Professional Athletes. It also recognizes as Sportsman
of the Year individuals who continue to preserve and enhance our Latino culture, values and
educational opportunities for our youth and who contribute to the betterment of the City of
Laredo and South Texas.
There have been since its inception an equal recognition of women athletes inductees. It was
important to find role models for our youth and the organizers wanted to include all ages,
regardless of sex in their programs.
The Latin Hall was also created to promote economic development and stimulate business
activity in downtown Laredo when local businesses are contracted to provide services to our
inductees, their families and guests who visit Laredo during the annual 3-day welcome reception,
media luncheon and induction banquet celebration weekend.
Through the years. (1975-2014), and with limited amount of funds the organization has, had
the opportunity to help the youth of our community with scholarships and other youth activity
fundraisers. Plans are to have a Latin Sports International Hall of Fame Museum (downtown)
(soon) which will be a first for the United States and to provide clinics (free of charge) to instruct
our youth in different sports.

Pitin Guajardo



Joe Arenas

Joe Arenas

NFL Kick-Off Return Champion
San Francisco 49’s



Vivian Villarreal
Women’s Professional Billiard Association


Women’s Pro 9-Ball
National Champion 1992
ESPN Open World
Champion- 1996

COACH 2006

Los Angeles Raiders Inductee
Coach Tom Flores

Tom Flores

Football - Oakland Raiders 1981
Los Angeles Raiders 1984
Super Bowl XV - XVIII
National Football League

Congratulations 2006


First Female ESPN Baseball Analyst

In 2006 The Latin Hall inducted Coach Tom Flores of the Super
Bowl Champion Oakland Raiders and Team USA Softball World
Olympics Gold Medalist Jessica Mendoza-Presently, First
Female Baseball Analyst for the ESPN Sports Network along with
Co-Host Raul Ibañes, Yankee and Phillies Great.

1996 Inductees. Tom Flores - Superbowl Champion,
Coach Oakland Raiders, Pitin Guajardo - LSHOF Founder,
Jessica Mendoza, 2004 Olympic Softball Gold Medalist.


2004 Team USA Softball
Olympic Gold Medalist.
2006 LISHOF Inductee
with J.W. Nixon High
School Softball team.


Jessica Mendoza Inductees


Jessica Mendoza is a 1998 graduate of Camarillo She was one of the leaders in helping Stanford
High School in California where she was an University to its firstWomen’s CollegeWorld
outstanding four-year varsity softball player, Series in 2002 where she was named to the all-
earning first team All-League recognition in each tournament team. Jessica has an undergraduate
of those years. degree in American Studies and a Masters in social
The Los Angeles Times named her Player of the sciences in education.
Year in 1998. Jessica was a four-time First Team Other recognitions she has received include
All-American at Stanford University from 1999- being selected PAC-10 Player of the Year in 2000;
2002 The Team USA lefthanded batting slugger Japan-Cup Best Batter Award, Stanford Female
and Olympic Gold Medalist started all nine games Conference Athlete of the Year and named a
in left field at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, scholar-athlete all four years. Mendoza’s natural
Greece. Mendoza earned two other International athletic ability was noticed when her dad,
Gold Medals, leading Team USA to the 2003 Gilbert, coached a baseball team and as a little
Pan American Games Championship in Santo girl she hung around the playing field.“I was
Domingo, Dominican Republic and the 2002 ISF always so hyper that he calmed me down by
World Championship. having me do drills and so forth with the team.”

Football - Oakland Raiders 1981 FCOOoTBaAcLLh Tom Flores
Los Angeles Raiders 1984
Super Bowl XV - XVIII
National Football League Champions

Tom Flores grew up in Sanger, won two Super Bowls. His Oakland
California, which is near Fresno. Raiders defeated the Philadelphia
He attended Sanger High Eagles 27 - 10 in Super Bowl XV. He
School where he was a three-sport guided the Los Angeles Raiders to a
star excelling in football, baseball 38 - 9 victory over the Washington
and basketball. He later enrolled Redskins in Super Bowl XVIII. The
at Fresno Junior College where he 1980 Raiders were the first wild card
again was a three sport letterman team to win the Super Bowl and
until he transferred to the College of the only team to win four post-
Pacific in Stockton. season games enroute to a title. The
As a senior quarterback, he was World Championship came in just
ranked fourth in the nation in total his second season as head coach.
offense and sixth in passing effiency His Raider teams won three AFC
and was selected to play in the Western Division titles and two AFC
prestigious East-West Shrine Game Championship games.
which pits the best players from the He and Mike Ditka of the Chicago
East against those from the West Bears are the only ones in the history
Coast. of the NFL to own Super Bowl rings
Flores spent 35 years in the National as a player, assistant coach and head
Football League, 10 as a player coach. Flores, with four Super Bowl
with the Oakland Raiders, Buffalo rings, ties him with a select few as
Bills, and the Kansas City Chiefs. the most ever won by an inidividual.
He served 12 years as an NFL The Sanger football stadium is
head coach, nine years with the named in his honor. The Tom Flores
Raiders and three with the Seattle Youth Foundation benefits the
Seahawks as a coach and general K-eight grades in the Sanger School
manager. He has an overall record District in the fields of fine arts,
of 105 wins, 90 losses. In nine years science and sports. Flores is currently
with Raiders, he compiled an 83 win a Radio color commentator for the
and 53 losses regular season and Oakland Raiders Football.

2007 Coach Augie GBaArSEriBAdLLo


NCAA World Series
Division 1 National Champions
University of Texas Longhorns 2002- 2005
FCuallilfeorrtnoina1S9ta7t9e-8U4n-i8ve5rsity Titans -
NCAA National Coach of the Year
Texas Sports and Titans Halls of Fame

Anative of Vallejo, California and a 1961
graduate of Fresno State University,
Augie Garrido began his coaching career
at San Francisco State, spending just one
season there. He later coached 21 seasons at
Cal State-Fullerton and three seasons each at
Illinois and Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo.
His career record as a 38-year college coach
includes 1,583 wins, 738 losses and five
national championships, three of those at
California State University - Fullerton and two
at the University of Texas at Austin.
Garrido has coached 10 seasons for the Texas
Longhorns and his teams have made five trips
to the College World Series in the last seven
years, winning the national championships in
2002 and 2005.

Jessica Mendoza


Team U.S.A. Softball

JOlympic Gold Medalist
essica Mendoza, Team U.S.A. softball Gold Medalist at the World Olympics in Athens,
Greece in 2004 and Latin Hall inductee in 2006 poses with the J.W. Nixon High School
Softball players during her visit to the high school Prior to her induction.




Jorge Rafael Jorge Rafael De Posada At the start of the 2010 season, Jorge made his 11th
De Posada straight Opening Day start at catcher, the most
consecutive starts by a Yankee at catcher on Opening
New York Yankees Catcher Day since Thurman Munson.
4 World Series
Championships Jorge Rafael De Posada was born on August 17, 1971 in Santurce, Puerto Rico. From
1990’s - 2000’s a very young age, Jorge Posada showed a tremendous aptitude for sports and
particularly for baseball. He attended the Alejandrino High School in San Juan,
where he participated in basketball, volleyball, track, and baseball. As a baseball
player in high school, he was named an All-Star player in the 1988-1989 season.
He went on to attend Calhoun Community College in Decatur, Alabama, where he
received an Associate Degree. At Calhoun College, Jorge continued to develop his skills
and was voted best hitter in 1990. A year later, he was named co-captain of the team,
in addition to being selected to the All-Conference team. Jorge was drafted by the
New York Yankees in 1991, where he began his professional career with the Oneonta
Yankees, making his major league debut on September 4, 1995. In the year 2000, he
became the starting catcher for the Yankees, a position that he has held ever since.
In 1999, Jorge married Laura Posada, an attorney from Puerto Rico.The couple
has two children, Jorge Luis (age 10) and Paulina (age 7). Just ten days after
birth, Jorge Luis was diagnosed with
craniosynostosisrCraniosynostosis, a congenital birth defect which is the premature
closure of the bones in the skull. Jorge Luis has endured numerous surgeries to
correct the condition. In the 2000, the Posada family created The Jorge Posada
Foundation to promote education and awareness about Craniosynostosis and provide
emotional assistance to families and children affected by this condition through“/o“Programs”Mentorship Network
and fundraising to medical centers. Jorge has received a number of awards on
and off the field. In 2000, he received the Thurman Munson Award for his baseball
accomplishments and philanthropic work in New York.
From 2000 to 2003 he was awarded the Silver Slugger Award. He received the 2001
Milton Richmar“You Gotta’Have Heart”Award by the New York Chapter of the
BBWAA. He was also named one of the Diamond Dad’s Founding Fathers in 2003 and
was nominated for a Roberto Clemente Award in 2005 and in 2007. Jorge received
the 2004“Good Guy”Award by the New York Press Photographers. He also received
the 2007 Bart Giamatti“Caring”Award from MLB’s Baseball Assistance Team. Jorge
was also honored with the 2006 Mentor of the Year Award from Kids in Distressed
Situations, Inc. and Fashion Delivers. Jorge also received the 2006 Puerto Rican Family
Foundation Excellence Award for his commitment to children, especially those affected
by Craniosynostosis. Jorge was honored at the first annual Puerto Rican Yankees
Festival in 2007 at the Puerto Rican Sports Museum in Guaynabo. Furthermore, Jorge
received the Parent Magazine Award in 2007 and the Ted Williams Community Award
from the Ted Williams Museum and Hitters Hall of Fame in 2009. In 2010, Jorge was
honored by the New York BBWAA as the“Willie, Mickey and the Duke”Award winner.
In April 2010, Jorge was featured in Sports Illustrated as part of the“Core Four”.
Professionally, Jorge is currently enjoying the best years of his career. He is a five time
World Champion - 1996, 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2009, as well as a five time All-Star.
In 2003, he tied Yogi Berra’s record for most home runs by a Yankee catcher (30), and
ranked third in the American League Most Valuable Player selection. In 2004, Jorge
was one of the team’s leaders in home runs and RRIs, as well as being among the
top of the list of the best American League baseball players. In 2005, he recorded his
1,000th career hit with a seventh-inning double in 8/20 win at Chicago. Jorge played
in 100 games at catcher in a season in which he turned 38 years old, the most games
ever for a Yankees catcher in a season at that age and the most by any catcher since
Benito Santiago in 2003 with San Francisco. In 2009, Jorge hit the first homerun at the
new Yankee Stadium and the first homerun of the 2010 season in all of Major League

San Felipe 2012
High School
Golf Team

San Felipe High
School Mustang
Golf Team
1957 Class A State
Del Rio, Texas

For a young quintet of high school golfers from Del to the Mustangs including the defending state champions, at the time,
Rio, Texas, miracles do happen. The team captured the the Rangers, to earn the state’s top honors in 1957. The team captured
title by the never-done-before margin of 35 strokes. the title by the never-done-before margin of 35 strokes. Additionally,
Additionally, the boys captured the gold, silver and the boys captured the gold, silver and bronze individual medals.
bronze individual medals. Unfortunately, despite this incredible run, the specter of prejudice
reared its head. Officials presented the team with its trophy without any
Joe Trevino, Felipe Romero, Mario Lomas, Gene Vasquez and Lupe fanfare or celebration. Nonetheless, the lack of festivities did little to
Felan ac-complished what many thought the unthinkable and dampen the team’s elation over it incredible achievement.
unreachable when they captured the states top golf championship San Antonio attorney Humberto Garcia chronicled the Mustang team’s
for their high school. Overcoming seemingly insurmountable odds and remarkable odyssey in his book,’The Mustang Miracle’ Earlier this
prejudice, these young men proved that with hard work, determination year, State Rep. Pete Gallegos 0-Alpine, sponsored a Congratulatory
and unity, the impossible can become the possible. Resolution, adopted by the entire Texas House of Representatives,
The 1950s South Texas landscape, peppered with mesquite and brush, recognizing the team for their achievement.
served as the golf course for these young athletes, a place they dubbed
“El Lianito”. Self-taught, using branches and handkerchiefs to mark San Felipe High School Mustang Golf Team 1957
holes made with empty cans, the quintet honed their golfing skills.The
young men further augmented their knowledge and love of the game
by serving as caddies at the exclusive, formerly segregated San Felipe
Country Club, where they observed how members played. On Mondays,
when the club was closed, the youngsters were allowed to practice on
the greens.
Segregation, sadly, played a huge part in the lives of these scholar
athletes.The San Felipe school district, primarily Mexican-American,
established the high school’s own golf team, recruiting Treviño, Romero,
Lomas,Vazquez and Felan as its first members and core. The team
quickly made a name for its self, defeating rivals in their unlikely, but,
quite remarkable, bid for a state championship. Team after team fell

Chayito Espinoza 2013



Maria del Rosario Espinoza, (born
November 27, 1987 in La Brecha,
Sinaloa) is a Mexican Taekwondo
practitioner. Espinoza stands at 173 cm
and weighs 69 kg.

E spinoza won her first competition in taekwondo
at the 2003 Pan American Youth Championship
in Rio de Janeiro. Later she participated in Open
tournaments in Canada, France, and Germany.
She won the 2007 World Taekwondo Championships
in Middleweight (-72 kg) category defeating Lee
In-Jong and also won the gold medal at the 2007 Pan
American Games in Heavyweight (+67 kg) winning
over Brazilian Natalia Falavigna.
She participated in +67 kg weight class in the 2008
Beijing starting with a victory over Tunisian Khaoula
Ben Hamza by a score of 4-0, later she beat Swedish
Karolina Kedzierska 4-2. In semifinal she qualified to
the final defeating British former world champion and
eventual Bronze medal winner Sarah Stevenson by 4-1
and culminate winning the gold medal passing over
Nina Solheim, earning the second gold for Mexico in
the Olympics.
In 2012, Maria returned to the Olympics in London.
She carried the flag for Mexico during the Parade of


Martial Arts/Taekwondo
Gold Medalist - Mexico
Olimpic Games Beijing 2008

Tony Martinez 2014

Tino Inductee
Baseball-New York Yankees
4 Times World Series Constantino “Tino”Martinez was born
Champion December 7, 1967 in Tampa, Florida and is
996-1998-1999-2000 remembered as one of the key players in
1988 Summer Olympics the New York Yankees 1990’s dynasty while
Gold Medal serving as a third and first baseman.
Seoul, Korea
H e was selected in the first round of the college
draft Class of the 1990’s by the Seattle Mariners.
Tino had one of his best years in 1995 when he
hits 31 homerun, drove in 111 runs and batted .297
as the Seattle Mariners won their Division. Following
that season, he was traded to the New York Yankees
to replace legendary first baseman and team captain,
Don Mattingly.
Martinez helped lead the Yankees to four World
Series Championships in 1996, 1998, 1999 2000. He
also won the Home Run Derby in 1997. He I hit two
memorable homeruns as a Yankee in a World Series,
first in the 1998 series when he hit a grand slam to
help the team win in game one and the other in 2001
when he hit one to tie the game against the Arizona
His best season as a Yankee came in 1997, when he
was second in the American League with 44 Home
Runs and 141 runs- batted- in and finished second as
the league’s Most Valuable Player.
In the 2001 World Series, Yankees played against
The Arizona Diamondbacks. the series went to
game 7, which Arizona won when Luis Gonzalez,
his childhood friend, hit a single against Yankee ace
reliever, Mariano Rivera in the bottom of the 9th to
win the series. Gonzalez later recalled that when he
went back home to check his answering machine, the
first message of congratulations was from Martinez.
In 2002, he was traded to the St. Louis Cardinal
baseball club in the National League. While at St.
Louis Cardinals, Martinez first visit to Yankee Stadium
was met by a long cheering crowd in appreciation
of his championship years in pinstripes. In 2005,
Martinez ended his successful 16-year baseball
career and began working as a game analyst for ESPN
and continues contributing to baseball as a batting
instructor for different clubs.

Jose Lothario 2015

Jose Inductee
World Class Wrestling
6 Time World Jose Lothario born Guadalupe G. Robledo on
Champion December 12 1934 in Torreon Mexico. Jose is
4 decades one of 8 children born to his parents. At the age
of 9 he was kicked out of his home and forced
to live on his own on the streets of Torreon. Jose
learned at a very young age that he would have
to take care of himself. Learning how to work
odd jobs the streets became a way of life.

Jose had become friends with some wrestlers that had suggested to
him that he begin training to be a boxer. After several years of boxing
his weight and growth was too big for the boxing level he was at so
a friend had suggested that he transfer to learning to wrestle and that
is where it all began.Wrestling in Mexico drew attention of promoters
in the United States wanting to bring in the Hispanic wrestlers. In 1956
Jose began traveling back and forth between the US and Mexico. Gaining
in popularity the promoters asked Jose to consider staying in the United
States to travel all throughout the country. Jose lived first in Arizona then
moved to California for a few years, then moved to Florida where he met
his wife Jean. After a couple of years in Florida Jose was approached about
a new promotion inTexas, therefore moving him to San AntonioTexas
where he still lives. Jose continued his wrestling career as well as taking
on the roll of promoter for SouthTexas and booking venues forWorld Class
ChampionshipWrestling. During this time it allowed him the opportunity
to travel to LaredoTexas nearly every other week for over 10 years.
During the 10 plus years that Jose headlined countless main events
in Laredo, he was extremely instrumental in helping The Laredo
Noon Optimist Club raise significant amounts of funds that were
distributed by The Club to various youth oriented charities throughout
the community. From the youngest wrestling fan to the oldest senior
citizen – Jose was a sports icon who was loved and adored by wrestling
fans throughout Laredo. Throughout the years Jose visited Laredo, he
would always make time to help The Optimist Club and their constant
desire to raise money to help the youth of Laredo. Jose never forget
about Laredo and Laredo will never forget Jose!
Jose enjoyed over 40 years in the professional wrestling world as
wrestling has always been in his blood, he also trained some of the
best known wrestlers like Gino Hernandez, The Von Ericks and Shawn
Michaels. Wrestling was the greatest career for Jose to have, not
only did it afford the opportunity to travel the world it also provided
him the opportunity to help others and use his popularity to bring
awareness or help raise funds for many of charities and non-profit
organizations. Jose currently still lives in San Antonio with his wife of
45 years and spends his time with his 3 children, 4 grandchildren and
4 great grandchildren.

Olaf Heredia 2015

Olaf Inductee
Soccer - Goal Keeper
FIFA World Cup To be considered a legendary
México goalkeeper, it is believed that one is
1986 more than an effective shot-stopper
and a perfect physical specimen.

For many, legends are ones that are inspirational
and who serve to reassure their team that they
can afford to take chances or suffer missteps
knowing that they have a dependable backup. It is
the legends that rise to the occasion and pledges to
fans and their countrymen that they will block the
shot and not allow to be scored upon.
For Olaf Heredia, his success, influence and inspiration
has reached beyond borders and culture and has
won more than titles and prizes but the hearts and
minds of his peers, fans and followers. Heredia, born
Carlos Olaf Heredia Orozco in Apatzingan, Mexico,
is the fifth of seven children and remains the pride
of many Latinos who have followed his career with
the Pumas (1978-1984), Tigres (1984-1987), Morelia
(1978-1990), Cruz Azul (1990-1993), and Santos
Laguna (1993-1997). Among the most outstanding of
his career is that of playing in the FIFA World Cup for
Mexico in 1986.
Olaf Heredia is among the great Latino role models
such as Luis de la Fuente and Andres Guardado
who set the standards for the future generations of
athletes. As the most popular sport in the world,
soccer has had a great impact on the United States
primarily attributed to the growing majority of
political Latino markets becoming more involved with
Major League Soccer.
Olaf, among the known and unknown, is one who
will continue to serve as a great source of inspiration
for generations to come and it is appropriate that he
is honored and recognized during this special 40th
anniversary when we unite to remember and preserve
all memories of leaders before. All symbolize the
levels of fitness and dedication that sportsmen like
Heredia endorses and that is of practice and training,
which is what leads to success.

Smithsonian to open first
permanent Latino gallery
This is an artist’s rendering of part of the Molina Family Latino Gallery

The Smithsonian announcedThursday that it will open its first gallery art museum dedicated to the American Latino in the near future. This is a great
focused on the U.S. Latino experience, in the National Museum of American first step.”
History. Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, said the gallery and the donors behind it prove“there
Opening in 2021 on the museum’s first floor, the Molina Family Latino Gallery is an appetite to showcase the uniqueness of the American Latino experience and
will feature bilingual exhibits exploring the history and contributions of strong funding opportunities to make it a reality.”
American Latinos. A $10 million gift from the five children of the late California
physician and entrepreneur C. David Molina is funding the 4,500-square-foot At a ceremonial signing of the donor agreement Thursday, Eduardo Díaz, the
space. director of the Smithsonian Latino Center, said the gallery in the American History
Museum would allow the center to connect directly with visitors.
The permanent gallery has been a long-term goal of the Smithsonian Latino
Center, which was founded in 1997 to work with the institution’s other museums “Establishing a dedicated space is no small task, and it isn’t inexpensive,”Díaz said
and research centers to recognize Latino contributions. With nine staff members, before thanking the members of the Molina family, many of whom attended the
the center supports professional development and education programs for event. The five siblings signed the agreement with Smithsonian Secretary David
Latino youth, scholars and museum professionals; funds exhibitions and J. Skorton, who said the gallery would help the Smithsonian“do a better job of
education programs; and creates Web-based content. telling the complete story of America.”
Advocates supporting a stand-alone Latino museum welcomed the The gallery will honor the donors’father, Díaz said, but also propel the center’s
announcement, saying it represents significant progress in their effort. efforts to educate and inform the world about the Latino experience.
“It’s wonderful. This is exactly the road the African-American Museum took. They “We will recover the past, engage the present and imagine the future,”Díaz said of
also had a gallery in the American History Museum,”said Estuardo Rodriguez, the exhibitions.
executive director of the advocacy group Friends of the American Latino In addition to the Molina family gift, Target has given $2 million for the space. The
Museum.“We run on parallel tracks, and we will point to that in our efforts to gallery will be designed by Museum Environments/Branded Environments and
fundraise and to pass legislation for (a museum).” will feature interactive activities, artifacts and first-person narratives.

The Smithsonian does not back the creation of a new museum, but there is The inaugural exhibit, tentatively titled“Making Home: Latino Stories of
growing support in Congress for a Smithsonian Latino museum, and members Community and Belonging,”will focus on the contributions of Latinos by showing
greeted the news of the new gallery with optimism. how they“are anchored in United States history,”said Ranald Woodaman, the
“I applaud the Smithsonian’s efforts to create a space to honor and display the center’s exhibitions and public programs director. It will begin in Colonial North
rich contributions that Latinos and Latinas have made to this country since its America and extend to present day, he said.
very inception,”Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., who introduced legislation last “We want to expand people’s notions of what it means to be Latino,”he said.“It’s
year to create a museum, said in an email.“I am convinced now, more than ever, not this homogenous experience. It depends on where you’re from. We want to
that the Smithsonian Institution has the capacity to fill an entire state-of-the- show how we came together under this big label.”

Herberto Hinojosa 2015



Herberto “Herbie” Hinojosa , multi-
stakes horse racing jockey in North
America was born in Brownsville,
Texas and started racing horses at the
young age of eight. Once the leading
stakes rider in the world, he was in
three Triple Crown campaigns.

At the 1961 Belmont Stakes he outran the Kentucky
and Preakness winner“Carryback”. In the 1974
Preakness Stakes, he was second ahead of
“Cannonade”whose prior win was the Kentucky Derby and
in 1978, he was fourth behind“Affirmed,”the last Triple
Crown winner.
Hinojosa won races over top winning jockeys such as
Willie Shoemaker, Johnny Longdren, Bill Hartack and
Eddie Arcaro in top stakes races throughout his career.
In his latter years, of racing, Hinojosa would mentor
apprentices that became jockey stars like Angel Cordero
Jr., Chris McCarron and Julie Krone.
He also won races for Roy Rogers, Cliff Robertson and
Audie Murphy during his Quarterhorse tour of the west
coast. Hitting four homeruns in a game is a major feat to
accomplish in sports and equivalent to winning six races
in a single card. Herbie did it more than twice in his career.
He was a multiple graded stakes winner who became the
31st North American jockey to reach his 3,000th win in
1981. He had 25,160 career starts, winning 3,334 coming in
second 3,349 and third 3,246 times with total earnings of
These numbers did not include his prior ten years of racing
Quarterhorses in the Southwest tracks of New Mexico,
Arizona and California where he became the leading rider of
the State of New Mexico.
In 1963, Hinojosa’s yearly earnings were greater than
football’s Jim Brown; basketball’s Wilt Chamberlain; golfs
Jack Nicklaus and baseball’s Mickey Mantle.
After riding for fifty years and experiencing every race track
in the United States and Canada, Herbie returned to his
hometown of Brownsville, Texas.

David Montes 2016

Inspiration Award Inductee

Adriana Gonzalez de Rodriguez Monica Pastrana

August 13, 1986 – August 29, 2015 Monica took up running as a means of losing
weight after the birth of her two children She
The late Adriana Gonzalez de Rodriguez had a passion for worked her way up from walking to running and
running. In fact, her husband recalls that their first date
involved running. Hgrew to love the sport.
er perseverance saw her drop close to 50 pounds, going from 160
She enjoyed the sport so much to 110 on her 5’1”frame. She looked at running as a way of setting
that she would enter as the example of a healthy lifestyle for her children. It became a
many marathons as possible, driving force for her passion for fitness in general.
including the Austin Biggest Loser
half-marathon and the Beach to Bay Along with running, Monica also engaged in weight training, high
relay marathon. She even ran the intensity interval training and yoga as a means of developing her
Laredo Relay half-marathon when ability to run as well as develop her overall fitness. She even included
she was just a few weeks pregnant swimming as part of her daily regimen.

with her son, Diego. After her son’s On that fateful day of the accident, Monica was training for her second
birth, she returned to running. full marathon. Nonetheless, during her road to recovery, she has begun
She enjoyed training at San to gradually regain her stride, having participated in several events,
Isidro Park. including a Run for Scholarships in memory of her friend Adriana
Adriana had a deep love for Gonzalez de Rodriguez where she completed her first three mile walk
the sport, but, she also had after the accident, the Flat Creek Estates 5K, the Marble Falls Run/Walk
a deep love for her family and and the LBA 5K Run in honor of Kari, her first full 5K after the accident.
for her profession, teaching. She
She dedicates the remainder of her participation in marathons and races
went above and beyond the call of to her two beloved friends and running companions, cherishing their
duty for her students, especially memories forever.
those with special needs. She was
equally as devoted and passionate
towards her family
Adriana had plans for competing
in even more marathons, including
the Ultra Marathon in Blanco, Texas,
and was, in fact, training for a full
marathon in San Antonio when
tragedy struck. Nonetheless, Adriana
will always be remembered for her
dedication, determination and love.

Karina M. Villarreal

October 25, 1982 – August 29, 2015

She was an educator who believed that everyone was entitled to quality
Ieducation. In the classroom, her dedication to achieve this was equal to none.
n the community, she was always supportive relentless in her training and dreamed of running
of any project that would enable a person to in many events. She encouraged many others to do
achieve his or her life’s dream. Karina believed so by example not just by words. It was her dream
that to achieve the maximum learning experience, to see a community of runners that espoused her
one had to be healthy of mind and body. desire to nourish the body as a catalyst to positively
develop the minds of young children.
Personally, she chose running. She believed
running was a healthy way to release stress and Karina too was training for a marathon, along with
acquire confidence and self-esteem. She was her running buddies on the day of the accident.

High School Cougars
1987 Cross Country Team “To the Top”

McFarland High
School Cougars
Cross Country Team

L-R Standing: Thomas Valles, Victor Puentes, Damacio Diaz, Johnny Samaniego, Jose Cardenas, U.S. Army, Staff Sergeant, Coach Jim
White. L-R Kneeling: Luis Partida, Danny Diaz

For eight young men what seemed like an impossibility turned into a
concrete reality when they became California’s Division 3 1987 State
Champion Cross Country team. Making them the first all Latino California
State Champions in Cross Country.
Coach Jim White
Prior to the 1987 season the team made specific goals .
1st  was to win the West Sierra League championship. establishing a dynasty of Cross Country excellence that continues to this day.
2nd was to win the South Area championship. In 2015, the heroics of both coach and team were captured in an inspiring
movie, McFarland USA. The film documented the team’s many obstacles
3rd  was to win the Central Section championship to qualify them for the State as well as its steadfastness and determination in reaching the state
Championship Meet. championship. Today, the team continues to live in McFarland, each
These were the competitions leading up to the State Meet. All their goals were contributing to their beloved community in different capacities.
represented by small mountains one bigger than the other leading up to the Coach Jim White led the Cougars to 9 state titles. Now retired he is a
peak of the biggest mountain, The state Championship.“To the Top”; became motivational speaker.
their motto that season. 
Thomas Valles, the lead runner is a correctional officer for the California
These young men worked in the fields and struggled with family dynamics State Prison system.
and discrimination, often taking on adult responsibilities upon their young
shoulders., Yet, nothing deterred them from reaching their goal of becoming Johnny Samaniego is a PE teacher who assumed the role after Coach White.
champions. Coach White helped mold the eight young men into champions. Jose Cardenas, U.S. Army, Staff Sergeant.

He mentored them, pushed them to the limits and taught them that Damacio Diaz is a police officer/detective.
education would be their vehicle to a better life. He understood the challenges Victor Puentes works for an agricultural company.
that they faced as migrant farm workers, laboring in the heat and cold,
struggling to help their parents make ends meet. Despite the adversities, Danny Diaz is a guidance counselor at his alma mater, McFarland High.
White held the team together and led them to their ultimate victory,
Luis Partida attended Cal. State University Bakersfield.

Dr. Jane Dr. Jane Cigarroa Unzeitig 2016
Unzeitig Inductee

ACllipminbeerMountain MOUNTAIN CLIMBING
2000s to Present One can say that the song “Ain’t No Mountain
High Enough” could have very well been
written for Dr. Jane Cigarroa Unzeitig.

During the past 10 years, the Laredo doctor has scaled the
heights, going to the Mt. Everest Base Camp, climbing
the legendary Mt. Kilimanjaro and scaling both the New
Zealand Alps and the European Alps, for the latter, making the
trek from France to Italy to Switzerland. She also trekked through
Three Sisters and Katoomba Falls in Australia, the Torres del Paine
in Patagonia and the Glacier National Park.
“The key for me is the enjoyment of exercise, the social
interaction with different people and the great expectation of
new trails to explore,” Unzeitig explained. When planning a trek
or a climb, Unzeitig notes that physical conditioning must be
optimized and that means “working out, not just for fun, but
with a goal in mind.”
Indeed, Unzeitig remains active even off the trail. An avid
sportswoman, she takes to the Inner City Pool for a 6:00AM
swim several times a week and, by her estimation, can “still do
a decent flip turn.” For Unzeitig, swimming stands as a lifelong
passion. She took to the water as a youngster, swimming at
the downtown Boys and Girls Club and participating in water
shows organized by Estela Kramer. Competitive swimming got
the 1972 J.W. Nixon High School graduate to Northwestern
University where she swam for the “Wet and Wildcats”
throughout her two years there.
Along with aquatics, Unzeitig also enjoys playing tennis. She
plays at least twice per week and participates in tournaments all
over the State of Texas. Locally, the tournaments are sponsored
by United High School, the Laredo Country Club and the Laredo
Tennis Association.“I have competed at the UTSA events for
several years, advancing my ranking to the current 3.5 level,”
she said. She and her sister Marti de Llano have even won a few
tournaments. Being over four decades older than most of their
competition, the sisters believe that strategy and experience
trump physical agility.
“Competitive sports, hiking, trekking, swimming and all
outdoors activities have been a great outlet for me, and a key
to maintaining good health,” Unzeitig said. Even though, by her
own estimation, she has never excelled at any sport, Unzeitig
exemplifies the goal of persistence in athletic activity as well as
in attempting new challenges at every age.

Roberto Garza 2016

Roberto Inductee
Texas A&M Kingsville
1997-2000 Told he wouldn’t’ make it in college
Chicago Bears football, Roberto Garza became
2005-2015 more determined to prove those
nay sayers wrong.

He was on theTexas A&M University Kingsville
Javalina football squad for four seasons 1997-
He even went further and excelled in track and field
winning the NCAA Division II title in the shot put in
2000 after a third place finish in 1999. He won the
Lone Star Conference titles in the discus 1999 and
shot put in 2000 to earn Most Valuable Men’s field
performer honors.
In 2011 Garza became the 11th Javalina to be
inducted into the LSC Hall of Honor.
He was drafted by the Atlanta Falcons in the fourth
round of the 2001 NFL Draft and would play center
for the Falcons until 2004.
He signed a one year contract with the Chicago Bears
in 2005 and signed a six-year contract extension
in 2006. In that season, the Bears reached a 39-14
victory over the New Orleans Saints, which allowed
them to claim the NFC Championship and advance to
the Super Bowl XLI. However, they fell short of the
championship losing 29-17 to the Indianapolis Colts.
Among the almost 1,700 National League players in
the 2006 season, Garza was one of only 19 Hispanics.
Garza became a free agent after the 2013 season,
but was resigned to a 1-year contract on February 27,
2014. On April 2, 2015, Garza was released by the
Bears, ending a ten-year tenure.
He is the Spanish speaking analyst for Telemundo Fox
Deportes and ESPN Deportes and has done this for
the last 2 SuperBowls.

Ed Figueroa 2017

Ed Inductee
Baseball Pitcher
New York Yankees Eduardo Figueroa Padilla was born in Ciales,
World Series Champs Puerto Rico. He is the only Major League
1977-1978 Baseball pitcher from Puerto Rico to win
twenty games in a regular major league

At the early age of seventeen he signed as a free
agent with the New York Mets in 1966. He played
for their affiliate the Winter Haven Mets, and
the RaleighDurham Mets. He was called to take a draft
physical in Puerto Rico. Upon his return three weeks later
he hurt his arm. The Mets released him and Figueroa
joined the United States Marine Corps, and spent the
year in Vietnam. Figueroa returned to baseball upon his
discharge from the Corps in 1970 and signed with the
San Francisco Giants. He was later traded to the California
Angels in 1973.
He made his first Major League debut in 1974 with the
California Angels. When the Angels were behind 10-2
Figueroa took over in the eighth inning. He gave up only
one hit in two innings. On July 6 th game to the Cleveland
Indians he pitched a complete game. He only gave up one
earned run while striking out six and scattering six hits.
He left the Angels with a 16-13 record a solid 2.91 ERA.
He was traded to the New York Yankees and joined their
pitching staff in 1976 with an impressive 19-10 with a3.02
ERA and finished fourth in the American League CY Young
Award. He went 13-2 for the remainder of the season
to help lead the charge from fourteen games back to
overtake the Boston Red Sox in the American League East.
The Texas Rangers purchased his contract on July 1980,
but was later released. He signed with the Oakland
Athletics where recorded a 3.34 ERA with the Pacific Coast
League affiliate, the Tacoma Tigers earning a promotion
to the majors. He made his final major league start on
September 6 against the Baltimore Orioles. He was offered
a minor league deal by the Milwaukee Brewers in 1982 but
chose to retire instead. During this time, Figueroa pitched
for the Golf Coast Suns in 1989, and winter ball with the
Lobos de Arecibo, Criollos de Caguas and Cangrejos de
Santurce clubs of the Puerto Rico Baseball League. He led
the league in wins on back-to- back seasons. Figueroa now
lives in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico, and is the proud owner of
two Mexican restaurants named Lupis in Old San Juan near
the San Juan.

Ricardo Ricardo “Finito” Lopez 2017

Ricardo “Finito” Lopez Nava was born
in 1966 in Cuernavaca, Mexico. He
is a retired and undefeated Mexican
professional boxer.

He defended the Lineal and WBC Strawweight
Championship a record of 21 times. He also won the
WBA and WBO Championships in the same weight
class. He later won and defended the IBF Light Flyweight
Championship before retiring. As an amateur, he won four
consecutive Guantes de Oro de México Championships from
1981 to 1984. He immediately turned pro without ever having
lost an amateur fight.
He made his professional debut at age 20, knocking out
Rogelio Hernandez in the third round. His record soared to
26-0 before even receiving a shot at a world title.
On October 1990 he defeated WBC Minimum weight
Champion Hideyuki Ohashi of Japan with a fourth round
knockout to obtain his first world title. In his 20th title
defense he unified his WBC title by defeating WBO
Minimumweight Champion, Alex Sanchez. He fought Rosendo
Alvarez for the WBA Minimum weight Champion. He defeated
Alvarez in a rematch claiming his third title. He vacated his
titles to move up in weight.
In his first match of the IBF Light Flyweight Championship
he defeated Will Grigsby of the United States. In 2001 he
knocked out Zolani Petelo who had recently vacated his IBF
Minimumweight title. It was the only title he had not claimed
before he moved up to light flyweight. He announced his
retirement during a press conference on November 2002 in
Mexico City.
Lopez is the third champion in history to retire undefeated
and the first to do so as an amateur and professional fighter.
He holds an astounding record of 51 wins (38 knockouts), 0
losses and 1 draw. Finito also shares the record for consecutive
title bouts without a loss.
López was inducted into the International Boxing Hall
of Fame and World Boxing Hall of Fame in 2007. He was
voted as the Greatest Strawweight and Light Flyweight
Champion Ever by the Houston Boxing Hall of Fame in
2014. López now works as a boxing broadcaster for the
Mexican Televisa network.

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