Studio 17’s Ilyana Capellan covers the story of one 65-year-old Latina celebrating her dream quinceañera. Lilia Flores has a story similar to many dreamers, her parents brought her to this country as a young girl to make a better life for herself.
Flores lived a life committed to taking her of her family after her husband left her to raise five children alone. Even though life threw curveballs her way Flores was able to navigate and come out on the other side. With the help of her parents, she opened a small tire shop in Los Angeles and eventually expanded to Bakersfield. Now her small tire shop has grown to be known as Pacific Tire, she worked hard to be able to provide for her kids and when they were old enough she opened a Pacific Tire store for each one to own. “I helped them to get their business like my dad showed me to be and that’s what I did all my life, I forgot about myself and I dedicated it to them, all my life,” said Flores.
Her children decided this was the year to make their mom feel like royalty. They decided to throw her a quinceañera to celebrate all of her accomplishments. Her celebration started with a mass, and a formal dinner followed. The part of the night Lilia was most looking forward to was her surprise dance with her family, “it’s very special and more because I’m with my kids and they are the ones that are going to be celebrating me and they are the ones that are going to be my chambelanes,” Flores said.
So you see a Quinceanera is normally a coming-of-age story, but for Lilia, such an impressive story only comes with age.