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July 29, 2009

Statement of Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez on Olga Méndez

“When Olga Mendez was elected to the New York Senate in 1978, she paved the way both for Puerto Ricans and women who sought elected office.  She was a fearless leader in New York City, a dedicated public servant, a fighter for the working class and a force to be reckoned with.  Today, I mourn her loss.

“Ms. Mendez lived a remarkable life and accomplished tremendous victories on behalf of hard working New Yorkers.  She cared deeply about her community, fighting for those who call East Harlem and the South Bronx home. The contributions made during more than a quarter century of service to New York as a member of the Senate, community activist and fighter for the underprivileged will be remembered for generations to come.

“I offer my deepest condolences to her family and friends.  She will be remembered as a trailblazer who led the way for many Puerto Rican women to achieve firsts.  I am proud to have followed in those footsteps.”