Sunday, December 22, 2013

Bob Santos, Leader & Activist, Former Director Inter-Im CDA

Bob Santos sparkled with energy, charisma and depth - that very energy allowed him to accomplish real change in Seattle. Growing up in the Central Area of the 1940s with its multi-ethnic communities laid the foundation for him to become an enormously effective community leader.

Photo by Madeline Crowley©

Bob on the Central Area:

 I was born in 1934 in Seattle’s International District (the ID). My Dad was professional prizefighter and my parents lived in the ID in the early 1930s. Then, my mother passed away in 1935. My Dad couldn’t take care of my older brother and I. He was a widower and his fighting career caused him to slowly lose his eyesight due to boxing injuries...

When my father completely lost his eyesight in 1945, I became his Seeing Eye dog, so I would come down from the Central Area to the NP Hotel in the ID to take care of him. I lived in the Central Area and went to school there. I was running back and forth between the two neighborhoods so I could take care of Dad.

This interview is now available in the book, We Lived Here, published by Chin Music Press:

Courtesy of the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers Maryknoll US

Bumps Blackwell OrchestraCollins Playfield photos showing the diversity of the area :

Bernie Whitebear
Read Bob's new fascinating book for more! It's on the Gang of 4, Bob Santos' activism across ethnic and racial lines for important social change

(Bob Santos was referred to this project by Yosh Nakagawa)

©  Madeline Crowley People of the Central Area 2013   All material is covered by copyright. Express written permission must be given for any copyrighted material on this page. Email to request permission to copy or paste materials. 

This project was supported in part by
4Culture's Heritage Projects program

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About Me

Seattle, WA, United States
I am not a professional photographer nor a trained journalist. At community meetings, it became clear that many of us don’t know each other. We haven’t heard each other’s stories and don't know each other’s circumstances. This is my attempt to give a few people the chance to tell their story, to talk about our community, to say their piece in peace. As such, comments have been disabled. The views and opinions expressed here are those of each narrator and do not necessarily reflect the position of views of the CentralAreaComm.blogspot blog site itself. The is not responsible for the accuracy of any information supplied by narrators of this project. All interviews have been edited and in places condensed.

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