Celebrating Heritage

Kevin Medina, 14, vice president of his eighth-grade class at Burns, explored his native Taíno Indian ancestry through a genetic mapping project. Each grade in the school researched a topic within the Latino community to coincide with Cinco de Mayo.

In this third installment of the ‘Mi Comunidad’ multimedia series, I planned to produce a piece about Cinco de Mayo, a Mexican holiday which commemorates an important victory against the French army. I learned that Burns students were researching several Latino topics in recognition of Cinco de Mayo. During my first visit to the school, I noticed the wonderful light falling on a young man from a hallway skylight. At the risk of being rude, I stopped talking to the teacher I was interviewing and began photographing him. Sometimes the photograph appears out of nowhere. I then introduced myself to Kevin and explained my project. I knew I had a story when I learned that Kevin had discovered his Taíno ancestry through a genetic mapping project.

Karima Eastmond, 15, president of her eighth-grade class at Burns, is also of Puerto Rican and Taíno heritage. She created a colorful map of her Frog Hollow neighborhood.

To see more photographs go to Courant.com

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One Response to Celebrating Heritage

  1. Greg Secord says:

    Glad to see a positive article about Hartford’s children!