People of Northeast Los Angeles: Ban Luu

My name is Ban Luu. B-A-N L-U-U. I've been living here for about twenty-three years in this area.

Actually, this neighborhood was rough, there's a couple of years it was kind of rough because of the gangs that were around here, but they've left and ever since then it's been pretty peaceful, it's nice.

You know, like who would've thought there's a river here. I mean, if you look at this place it looks a little like a river. Where you have to drive like, maybe forty-five [minutes] to an hour to get to a spot like this, but for me it's in my backyard. And, and that's the best part of it. You don't have to drive anywhere, you don't have to take the bus anywhere, you just walk out your door, you walk maybe like, fifteen, twenty feet and boom. You got a river, you got a bike path, you got nice scenery, you know?

There's regular fishing people that come out on the weekends and, and they're here for four or five hours just relaxing with their kids. I even seen parents bring their kids down and let them play in the river.

You see different types of birds, different types of ducks. And you're in downtown L.A. I mean, like right now at this moment do you hear any cars? And we're next to the five freeway. We're next to the one-ten freeway and do you hear anything? I mean, it's so peaceful here. How can you not like it here?

About People of
Northeast Los Angeles
These are stories from the everyday people that make-up Northeast Los Angeles, particularly the neighborhoods of Atwater Village, Cypress Park, Glassell Park, Lincoln Heights, and Elysian Valley. See some of our featured portraits below, explore by neighborhood, or see all the stories.





About the Author

For the past twenty years, Chilean born Ricardo Palavecino has been developing his skills as a cinematographer working on documentaries, feature films, television shows, and commercials.
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