Colton native Jess M. Chavez, born April 25, 1919, just celebrated his 101st birthday.
Chavez, a WWll veteran, was celebrated on Saturday, April 25, in a precautious CODIV-19 way.
“I was contacted by Jess’s daughter Lorraine a few weeks ago and we discussed the potential to host a birthday parade, but ultimately we decided on hosting him a brief and intimate front yard celebration, where everyone stood at least six feet apart,” said Colton Councilmember Dr. G (Luis Gonzalez).
About 50 of Chavez’s closest family and friends met outside of his home off Olive Street, in Colton.
“The most special portion of the 30-minute long gathering was that Chavez had five generations of family present at his birthday gathering. He had his kids, kids’ grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren,” continued Dr. G.
As guests began to arrive at Chavez’s home, he came out of his home to be greeted by dozens, before he used a microphone to thank everyone.
“Thank you all for being here, all of this means a lot to me,” Chavez said.
As Chavez put away his microphone, his grandkids passed out mini cupcakes to the attendees.
“Jess is a dear friend of mine and we’ve been in contact since I interviewed him back in 2013 for a book I wrote titled “CityTalk Presents Veterans of WWll Living in Colton 2014.” Despite the current public health crisis…I’m happy his family, friends and I were able to celebrate a true hometown hero,” concluded Gonzalez.