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Sunday, December 8, 2013 - 5:05pm
El Paso, Texas (KDBC) — An El Paso woman continues her battle against cancer but her faith and courage is inspiring dozens of people.
Earlier today dozens of “Segundo Barrio” community members joined them to honor their beliefs and to support them through these hard times with a dancing "matachin" tune and prayers in their traditional mass out in the street.
The event has been held since the 60’s and it all started by Josefina Ramirez a long time El Paso resident who was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year.
"I’ve been losing strength to walk to move for everything completely and doctors say it may take a long time to get better,” Josefina said.
But 43 years later from the first celebration and despite her illness nothing stopped her from organizing this year's mass.
“I’m in a very critical situation and very painful but I have to be strong for my community and my barrio for all my children and for all of you,” she added.
Her family says her dedication and example brings motivation and courage.
"it definitely means a lot for me as a little boy I remember being here you know seeing this event happen and it means a lot it gives me a lot of faith in my religion and I admire my grandmother for what she does," Josefina’s grandson Jason Ontiveros said.
“I had leukemia 13 years ago and they had told me that I was not going to survive and to this point every year that we have made it I come here,” Josefina’s daughter Martha Ramirez said.
Many neighbors also attended the mass, young and old prayed for her and gave thanks while Josefina holds on to her faith, she says that’s what keeps her fighting.
"Now I do it with more strength because it’s too unite my community and my children and for everyone going through cancer be strong and look forward I have faith it’s the most important thing for me," Josefina Ramirez concluded.
According to the family their goal is to share Josefina’s strength and to inspire others that are battling cancer during the holiday season by sending a message of unity and hope.