“This sculpture represents the Native American elder who used to stand along the portals around the Taos Plaza in New Mexico.” *
Artist Huberto Maestas, San Luis, Colorado
The sculpture is in bronze.
I walked often by the sculpture of this Native American elder. It was part of the landscape.
Taos Elder Tony Reyna
On Reyna’s 100th birthday on Feb. 1, the New Mexico Legislature honored him with a memorial declaring Tony Reyna Day. The proclamation was authored by state Sen. Carlos Cisneros, D-Questa.
Reyna was also honored during 2015 Veterans Day ceremonies at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center in Albuquerque. “I served my country,” Reyna said. “I served my people. I’m still serving. I’m available anytime they ask me!”
Reyna is a survivor of the Bataan Death March in the Philippines, after which he endured three and one-half years of brutal captivity during World War II. His captivity ended in 1945 when he and other prisoners of war were liberated by Allied forces. He is the last of 11 men from Taos Pueblo who were captured at Bataan. ~Quotes from the Santa Fe New Mexican Taos Pueblo Elder
Today something was different.
Someone had placed a bright red flower on this elder.
Lighthearted, a symbol of spring.
Beauty and whimsy.
I think it would have pleased him.
Continuing on my way, I thought about service to one’s country and one’s people.
Three and one-half years of brutal captivity.
I am free because of people like Tony Reyna.
I am grateful to people like Tony Reyna.