Richie Pérez ¡PRESENTE!

PHOTO: After a cord malfunction, an attendee climbs up the 172nd Street light-post to remove the new sign’s cover.

(December 3, 2017) One of the icons of the Nuyorican Movement within political and social activism, Richard ‘Richie’ Pérez, was remembered through powerful words and reflections. They all came together at East 172nd St. & Ward Avenue in The Bronx to officially declare it ‘Richie Perez Way.’

Richie Pérez was a teacher at James Monroe High School, before joining the Young Lords Party, serving as Deputy Minister of Information and Editor for its weekly newspaper, PALANTE. He went on to co-found the National Congress for Puerto Rican Rights and the Justice Committee where his accomplishments and devotion to social justice made him legendary within surrounding NYC minority communities.

The street dedicated to Pérez is at the site of the former high school where he taught, and where he experienced the awakening which transformed him into an unrelenting revolutionary spirit — One that continues to lead and inspire, long after his death. Present at the dedication ceremony were his widow, Martha Laureano-Pérez, and his mother, Dña. Ana Pérez. They were supported by and witness to dozens of accounts of how the strength of his dedication and love for his people had guided them through some of the darkest periods of their lives.

Richard ‘Richie’ Pérez would have been 73 years of age, on this day. He died in 2004 from prostate cancer.

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