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News for Southeastern Arizona, provided by the University of Arizona School of Journalism

A statue’s hidden story

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A story that began over 30 years ago in Tucson comes back to life today through the personification of a statue. Marge Pellegrino and Marianna Neil wrote “The Sculpture Speaks: A Story of Survival” after they discovered a statue in the Southside Presbyterian Church in Tucson. Their story follows events in the 1980s involving the persecution of refugees in the United States. Only their story stemmed from a bronze statue. Artist John Howser created the statue and used refugee Juana as his model. During this time, the government handed down indictments that went after sanctuaries. Because of this, Carmen Duarte of the Arizona Daily Star, shared Juana’s story of her journey from Mexico City to Tucson. This caught the eye of government officials, who began trying to track her down. Juana, at this time, was posing for Howser’s sculpture....

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