People of Northeast Los Angeles: Leobardo Villa

Mi nombre es Leobardo Villa. Yo vine aqui antes de que compraran esta casa. La dueña es mi hija. Antes como en todas partes habían pandillas, habían robos así. Ya tiene como más de ocho años que se vive tranquilo, aquí como hay puras fabricás.

Esta zona quizás por lo que ha sido industrial no hay tanto vandalismo. Aqui tenemos la de segunda San Vicente y al otro lado esta la otra segunda. Siempre pasa mucha gente a comprar ropa, a comprar muebles, pues cosas que necesitan, televisiones, cosas electricas, y fijese que durante los años que yo estado aquí no se ha registrado ningún accidente, que haíga habido gente agresiva, que ofende a los demás, aquí todos los vecinos nos vemos como una familia, todos vivimos bien.Y si toman, aqui, pues siempre nosotros aquí cuando hay una fiestezilla, unos cumpleaños, se hace una pequeña fiesta, y se emborrachan, pero hasta ahi nada mas. No hay gritos que se ofendan uno con otro ni los vecinos.

No es por afamar la colonia o la calle pero siempre hemos vivido tranquilos. A veces hasta dejamos los carros abiertos y no pasa nada. Vienen familias de los vecinos, hacen sus fiestas, hacen carne asada, ponen música, se ponen a bailar.


Translation:

Mi name is Leobardo Villa. I've been here since before they bought this house. My daughter owns it now. In the past, like in all places, there were gangs, robberies. But it's been more than eight years now that we've been living peacefully, you know since there's a lot of industry around here.

Maybe because it's so industrial around here there hasn't been much vandalism. We have Saint Vincent De Paul and on the other side there's that other thrift store. A lot of people pass through here to buy clothes, furniture, stuff they need, televisions, electronics, and during that time I've never seen accident around here, sure there are some aggressive people, who offend others, but all of us neighbors are like family. And if we have a little drink, you know, when there's a little party, a birthday, someone will throw a party, and people will get drunk, but that's it. There's no screaming or neighbors getting offended with one another.

I'm not trying to toot our own horn but we've always lived peacefully here. Sometimes we've even left our cars unlocked and nothing's happened. People's relatives come by, they'll have a party, make some "carne asada," play some music, and start dancing.  


The above interview is transcribed and edited from the following interview:

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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