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Archived Photo via EFE. Helen Chavez, center, at the launch of the USNS Cesar Chavez.
Archived Photo via EFE. Helen Chavez, center, at the launch of the USNS Cesar Chavez.

Civil rights activist, Helen Chavez, dies at 88

Helen Chavez, widow of the civil rights activist and labor leader Cesar Chavez, died yesterday at the age of 88 at a Hospital in Bakersfield.

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Helen Chavez, widow of the civil rights activist and labor leader Cesar Chavez, died yesterday at the age of 88 at a Hospital in Bakersfield.

According to the New York Daily News, Chavez passed away surrounded by many of her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Chavez appeared at her husband's graveside just last year and accepted a folded flag as he was bestowed with military honors that were not given to him at the time of his death.

In the mid-1940s, Helen met Cesar Chavez and the two married in 1948, after Cesar was discharged from the navy. The Couple had eight children together.

In the early 1960s, Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta, also an activist and labor leader, established the National Farm workers Association.

"I've been able to cook (the salsa) almost to a 'T'. I would say her rice is like none other and her refried beans, that's all I wanted to eat. It was like butter," Huerta told NBC News. "She reminded me of a lioness. Her children and her grandchildren were the most important thing in the world.”

Helen and Cesar began organizing farm workers, when the family decided to leave East Los Angeles in 1962 and return to Delano.

Helen Chavez generally kept a low profile, according to the New York Daily News. She did not speak often in public or in the media, but would make public appearances to honor her husband and his cause.

Funeral services will be held this Friday at 10 a.m. at the Shrine of Remembrance America the Beautiful Chapel in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

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