Charles Velazquez Collection

I was born in San Ysidro, CA on February 11, 1933 approximately (4) blocks from what is now the San Ysidro Library.

My parents immigrated from Mexico to the USA in search of a better life during the mid-1920’s. My father was a Jack of all Trades, cement worker, cook’s helper, etc. My mother was a stay at home mom, raising nine (9) children. Five (5) boys and four (4) girls. I was the youngest boy and had one sister three years younger than I. All but one graduated from high school, two went to college. My one sister graduated from USD San Diego and St. Mary’s in Los Angeles.

Four ended up owning businesses, one sister owned two grocery stores, one sister owned two grocery stores, one sister owned one grocery store, one brother owned an auto supply store and one brother was an insurance supervisor.

My four (4) brothers served in the US Military. Two in the Army, two in the Airforce. One died in world War II. Three sisters married military men.

I attended Mr. Carmel Catholic School thru 6-th grade, Southwest Jr. High and graduated from Mar Vista High schools second graduating class in 1952. My claim to fame was being selected to the All-Metro League Baseball Team in 1951. I was interested in all sports, playing or watching.

Upon graduating high school, I began working as a furniture delivery truck driver for Staples-Wymore furniture in Imperial Beach, worked up to salesman when the company became Mcmahon’s furniture, and became a store manager when it was sold to Heilig-Meyers furniture chain.

I met my wife (Glyndon Harlan), who came from Missouri to California, applied and was hired into the office of Staples-Wymore and into my life. We married (51) years ago on Valentine’s Day and settled just one mile and a half from where we met and worked. We have three children, two hers, one mine and none ours (well they are all ours). All three attended college. The oldest became vice president of a railroad company in Kansas, then moved to Long Beach, CA to become a supervisor of a truck and rail shipping company. Our daughter has a degree in graphic design and has followed that career in Oregon. Our youngest son has a photography business taking photos at conventions, Marine Balls and even prisons.

I really like growing up in a small town (San Ysidro) where everyone knew you and we all walked to church, the local theatre, drugstore, dances at the civic center and there was almost no crime.