Mexican Freedom Fighter

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    Exploring downtown Tucson
    Wednesday, June 15

    Statue to José Doroteo Arango Arámbula - aka Francisco Villa - aka Pancho Villa;
    Mexican freedom fighter (depending on your point of view; one man's freedom fighter is another man's terrorist - or so the saying goes) ;-)

    The statue rests in the middle of a small grassy area (Veinte de Agosto Park) in the middle of traffic, and I might have missed it, had not the taxi driver not pointed it out to me.

    Spanish-born sculptor Julian Martinez and foundry man Javier Portilla created the statue, which the Mexican government and Mexican media organization Agrupación Nacional Periodista gave to the state of Arizona on June 30, 1981. The statue survived two lawsuits that attempted to stop it from being erected. The Villa sculpture came to Tucson only after the Phoenix-area town of Guadalupe rejected it. Nevertheless, the statue continues to generate heated discussion (see this link: (ur1.ca/4ghee).

    I guess historical perspective depends on who's writing it! ;-)

    There is a small plaque on the base of the sculpture which reads:
    "IN FRIENDSHIP"
    This Equestrian Statue of the Mexican
    Revolutionary Figure
    GENERAL FRANCISCO VILLA
    1877 - 1923
    presented by
    PRESIDENT JOSE LOPEZ - PORTILLO
    Republic of Mexico
    to the
    STATE OF ARIZONA
    June 30, 1981
    special appreciation to Manuel Torres 1914 - 1980

    No# A on the Presidio Trail map: www.visittucson.org/includes/media/docs/DowntownTour.pdf

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