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Primo 500: The descendants of Amarante and Carlota Quintana

Mercie Ulibarri of Cedar Hill, N.M., tells me that her great-grandparents, Amarante and Carlota Quintana, lived in Carracas and Rosa, but moved to Allison when all the people had to move from Rosa to make way for Navajo Dam.

She lists the following members on her Quintana family tree: Luis, Jose, Amarante, Ophelia, Jose Perfecto, Inez, Della and Pablo.

Mercie is the granddaughter of Luis, daughter of Eduvigen (Ed) Marquez of Arboles and the late Angie Marquez, and a prima hermana and prima tercera to two women in our school leadership program, Patsy Marquez and Desiree Benavidez.

Patsy Marquez is a first-year principal at Nazhoni Elementary in Shiprock. She is the granddaughter of Luis and the daughter of the late Pete Marquez of Bloomfield and his wife, Gloria.

Desiree Benavidez, who will start the school leadership internship in the fall, is the granddaughter of Ophelia and the late Jose Elifar Candelaria of Blanco. Desiree is the wife of Adam Benavidez and the daughter of Joe Jr.

The family of Amarante Quintana is a large, extended family which includes Pagosans June Marquez (who recently performed a tribute to Patsy Cline as a fund-raiser for the museum), Joe and Sharon Quintana, Lou Jean and Henry Espinosa, Carol and Emilio Perez, and … I know I’m going to get in trouble for leaving someone out. But you might also be familiar with Julia, the proprietress of Julie’s El Amigo Restaurante in Ignacio and her sister, Marcella, from the gift shop adjacent to the restaurant. They are the daughters of Inez.

This morning, Bobbie and I are headed towards Cimarron and Raton, N.M. Last night, we met with one of our recent graduates, Catherine Praiswater Sanchez, the niece of late Archbishop Sanchez of Santa Fe, who is in her first year as principal of a charter school in Las Vegas. She is quickly finding out that being a principal of a charter school is the same as being a superintendent, a business manager, a teacher, a janitor and a maintenance person all rolled into one. That meeting took a while and I think Bobbie was probably asleep the minute her head hit the pillow. She’s awake now, though, and we’re speeding up I-25 near Wagon Mound to the Cimarron exit for my 8 a.m. meeting with an intern who spends three days a week at an elementary school in Cimarron and two days a week at an elementary school in Angel Fire. After that, we’ll head north again so we can get to Raton before noon for another round of meetings with our three interns in that area. It will be dark before we return to Las Vegas.

Bobbie and I have 23 interns each this school year, and they are scattered from Shiprock to Raton and from Bernalillo to the Colorado state line. In addition to on-the-job support, we also write grants and provide workshops for the center. The Educator Support Center of Farmington hosts the annual School Administrator’s Academy at San Juan College (January) and the Special Education Academy at Northern New Mexico College in Espanola (October). All events are free to area educators.

¿Sabes qué? I heard that one of the Schutz boys from Chromo lives here in Wagon Mound. If he’s here, maybe he’ll show up in a newspaper or on TV or maybe I’ll run into him sometime when we stop to get fuel or something to eat.

“Aren’t you from Pagosa?” I’ll ask. That always makes people smile.

Know you are loved.

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