2014

Thursday, 09 October 2014 00:00

Former coach helped bring youth soccer to Johnson City

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Editor's note: Juan Chiu died Feb. 21 at the age of 78.

Sometimes men who played soccer for Juan Chui as kids tell him how he inspired them.

Coach Chiu, who once served as a soccer coach at Milligan College, also coached youth soccer in Johnson City, Tennessee, for 35 years.

“I think that one of my favorite parts of coaching is seeing former players, and they remember playing soccer for me,” said Chiu, who has seen his players become successful in professions such as law, acting and business.

She loves history, she loves to read, she loves listening to stories and she loves telling stories. Thirty-three-year-old Carolina Quiroga Hurtado found these passions as a child, and because of her mother's ability to tell humorous stories as a school teacher, she found her love of storytelling.

"It is very easy for me because I've been reading all my life and I've been retelling things all my life too," Quiroga said. "I've been interested in storytelling because I just love stories. It's not like I'm a gossip person but I do like to hear stories."

A native of Cali, Valle del Cauca, Colombia, where she spent the first 30 years of her life, she came to the United States to become a professional storyteller. She chose to move to America and pursue a career in storytelling despite her family and friends thinking she was crazy for not sticking with her practical job as a graphic designer, which she already knew would offer a promotion in the near future.

Thursday, 10 October 2013 00:00

Johnson City business aiming big

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Eva Becerra and her husband, Raul Rendon, have followed their dream. They are the owners of Doña Eva Meat Market & Mexican Deli in Johnson City.

On a quiet Tuesday afternoon, Becerra, Rendon and one or two assistants work in the kitchen preparing Mexican dishes of all sorts, but mostly tamales. The front door chimes once or twice as customers arrive. They swiftly pick up their order and head on their way, Eva returning to the kitchen once again.

 Rendon mans the kitchen and occasionally cracks a joke in Spanish, drawing the smiles and laughs of those working around him. This is what life looks like for them. This is what the American Dream looks like for many like Becerra and Rendon. This is what they aim for.

 It hasn’t always been this way. They, like everyone else in life, have had to adjust and sometimes make the best of their situation, but they persevered and now have much to show for it.

Tuesday, 08 October 2013 00:00

A hard worker with a passion for farming

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Anyone who walks on to José Diaz’s farm will immediately be met by a unique cut-out, goat-for-sale yard sign. He said people like the sign. Goats aren’t the easiest animals to raise, Diaz said, “and everything I do is a lot of work.”

He wakes up early every morning to feed his animals, trim their nails if needed and prepare for the day. Diaz likes goat meat because he grew up eating it and drinking the milk in his birthplace of Carretero, Mexico. He moved here almost 30 years ago he said and hasn’t been back for a long time.

Now he can be found at the Jonesborough Farmer’s market rain or shine during the warmer months of the year, and selling online during the colder months. Jose Diaz is not only known for his goat raising but also his chemical-free produce and chicken eggs.

Tuesday, 08 October 2013 00:00

Latino art struggles to be seen in East Tennessee

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When you think of Latin American art, what do you picture?

While some may have a specific idea in mind, there’s really no way to define an artist’s style simply by looking at their heritage, as artist Mouzer Coelho – whose drawings can be seen throughout the article -- points out.

“A lot of people think that if you’re a Latin artist, you automatically do Chicano art, and I don’t do anything like that at all, so I wanted to show people that Latin Americans do all kinds of different things, not just that kind of style,” he said.

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