JUDGE EMILIO VARGAS POST OFFICE BUILDING -- (House of Representatives - April 20, 2005)
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Mr. GONZALEZ. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of H.R. 1072, a bill to designate the postal facility in Goliad, Texas, as the "Judge Emilio Vargas Post Office Building." This bill was introduced by my good friend and colleague, Congressman RUBEN HINOJOSA.
Born in Goliad, Texas, Judge Vargas has dedicated his life to the people of Goliad, and I find it most fitting to honor his service by naming the Goliad Post Office after him.
As a first-generation American, Judge Vargas attended segregated schools because of his Mexican heritage. After attending Bee College, he volunteered and joined the Air Force as an airman. Upon leaving the Air Force, Judge Vargas worked to improve the lives of the people in the community. He was active during the civil rights movement during the 1960s and he continues to fight to increase Hispanic participation in government.
Judge Vargas served 14 years on the Goliad Independent School District Board of Trustees. While he was there, the Goliad School Board was voted one of the 10 best school boards in Texas. Judge Vargas understands the importance of developing an educated population, and because of his commitment, numerous students have gone on to prestigious colleges and universities, including the U.S. military academies.
For 28 years, Judge Vargas served as a caseworker with the Texas Department of Human Services, helping the indigent and vulnerable in a six-county region. During his tenure, he worked with the Job Corps program helping to train new workers, and with the Surplus Commodity Programs to feed hungry families.
During the past 10 years, Judge Vargas has served as the Justice of the Peace for Goliad County and for 9 years was a Reserve Deputy for the Goliad County Sheriff's Department.
Goliad is the birthplace of Mexican General Zaragoza whose defeat of the French Army is celebrated as Cinco de Mayo. In addition, Goliad has played a significant role in the War for Texas Independence. Judge Vargas has been a member of the Zaragoza Society for over 45 years, and the chairman for at least a decade. Through this work, Judge Vargas brought national recognition to Goliad's historic significance both in Mexican and Texas history.
I believe it is most fitting to honor Judge Vargas' service to the people of Goliad by naming the Goliad Post Office after him, and urge my colleagues to support this legislation.
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