WASHINGTON – Today, Representatives Raúl M. Grijalva and Jesús G. “Chuy” García are uplifting their resolution honoring Día de los Muertos or Day of the Dead. This multiday holiday, celebrated throughout the U.S., Mexico and parts of Latin America, honors the memories of friends, family, and loved ones who have passed away.
Rep. Grijalva and García both created ofrendas or altars, to honor and remember lost loved ones and family. These altars are decorated with lighted candles, cempasúchil marigold flowers, pan de muerto, and favorite items from departed ones. Rep. Grijalva observed this multi-day holiday with the first-ever Día de los Muertos community ofrenda at the Tucson El Pueblo Community Center. The community ofrenda will be on display for several weeks, offering a chance for Arizonans to come together and remember the departed.
“Día de los Muertos is a tradition that celebrates our culture, ancestors, what was and what will be. It’s my hope that the celebration at the El Pueblo Community Center is as enduring to our community as the memories and legacies of those who came before us,” said Rep. Grijalva. “Like so many Latino communities across our nation, this holiday is special for the people of Southern Arizona. This Día de los Muertos, we not only remember those who were lost that were close to us, but also the passing of migrants and immigrants who came to our country seeking a better life for themselves and their families. I’m honored to uplift this resolution once again with my friend Rep. Chuy García and commemorate the rich tradition and heritage that remembers our departed ones from Arizona to Illinois and beyond.”
A video of the Día de los Muertos community celebration at the El Pueblo Community Center can be found here.
“On Día de los Muertos, we remember and celebrate the lives and legacies of those who departed before us. We create ofrendas to celebrate family, friends, and other loved ones and give them food, drinks and other mementos to enjoy as their spirits travel back to visit us. This year, I want to particularly honor the lives lost in the migrant community,” said Rep. García. “In 2022, at least 853 migrants have died in the perilous journey to get to the United States, including 53 who died trapped in a truck in the sweltering Texas summer in June. These migrants left behind families, hopes and dreams, but as long as we remember them, they will not disappear from this world.”
A video of Rep. García explaining the importance of Día de los Muertos can be found here.
Initially introduced in 2019, the Día de los Muertos resolution was created to honor the Annual All Souls Procession in Tucson. The current resolution celebrates Día de los Muertos and urges the United States and the Department of Homeland Security to promote policies that uphold the inherent human dignity of each migrant person and to put an end to migrant deaths along the United States-Mexico border; and calls on the United States and Department of Health and Human Services to promote policies focused on COVID–19 protections and ensure all communities have equal access to protections to put an end to COVID–19 related deaths.
The resolution is cosponsored by 52 Members of Congress. The text of the resolution can be found here.