Armando Saenz


Archer Saenz, April 15, 2015
"We were denied renting the apartment because of my name, and the way I looked to them, because I was Hispanic. And yet when we left the apartment office we could see signs outside that said 'Apartments for Rent.' They had apartments to rent, just not for us because I was not an Anglo."
Armando Saenz

Introductory Profile: About Armando Saenz

Armando Saenz, my grandfather, was born in DeWitt County in 1941. He grew up in Cuero, Texas until he finished high school, then moved to southern California and joined the military service. He was in the Pacific during the Vietnam conflict, then returned to Los Angeles in the 1960s and went to college. He moved back to Texas and moved around the Gulf Coast and now resides in Houston. In 1971, he and his wife, Linda Pack, had their first child, Paul Saenz, my father.

He is about 511, a little portly, with brown eyes and dark hair. I interviewed my grandfather about growing up in south Texas and his experiences with discrimination, and also his experiences in the Civil Rights Movement in California. Despite the darkness of the interview topics and stories, he managed to keep the conversation light and friendly. Even when telling harsh stories, he still added a few jokes or happy comments.

I liked this because I felt like I got to know more about my grandfather.