Labor Day
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Labor Day Is The Day We Honor The Union, And It's So Important

When it comes to holidays that aren't so recognized, everyone has a favorite and Labor Day is mine.

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Labor Day
Jose Cuevas

Labor Day 2007. I was just a little seven-year-old girl standing next to her father when a man walked up to me and gave my cousin and I a banner with the name of my dad's union on it. As a little girl, I held that banner with my labor day shirt on, happiness and pride, and I walked. Now, every year on Labor Day, no matter where I am, I wake up and I go to our station, I grab my shirt, eat my pastry and orange juice, and I walk. I walk with pride and happiness. I am so proud of my dad and seeing how much he has accomplished simply for my mother and I. I am the proud daughter of a union member.

Labor Day is the day that I thank, not only my dad but the union. They have helped him throughout his career. I have been privileged enough to be able to sometimes visit him when he would work out of state. My fondest memories of childhood are of those trips, I made new friends with other little girls traveling to visit their dads or I made friends with my dads work friends. Everyone treated me like a princess and there was never a dull moment with any of them. Those memories may be long gone but the stories they left behind are a conversation starter at the dinner table.

Local 514 is not just a company that my dad works for, its the place where all of my childhood stories come from. It is the reason that I am sitting here with the privilege of writing my story for the world to hear as I began my second year of college. The union didn't just give my dad money to keep us afloat, it gave us the ability to see the world. It gave him the ability to better his English, but overall it gave me the ability to go out into the world and say: "I am a Latina. I am a first-generation college student. I am the proud daughter of a hardworking father in the union. I am part of the Local 514 family."

So every year I will get up early morning with bags under my eyes whether it rain or shine. I will be there in line walking downtown representing Local 514 because it has helped my family more than I could ever thank them for.

So next year, if you are interested in attending as a spectator I encourage you to show up and honor the people that make our world a better place. Honor people like my dad who do the cement in arenas or parks. Honor the plumbers, the ironworkers, the electricians. Thank them for all of their hard work because without them, believe it or not, we would be a mess. The little jobs they do that we never pay quite enough attention to our the backbone of our cities, states, and our country.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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