Monday, October 03, 2022

Medardo (Leonard) Delgado

| July 8, 2022 1:00 AM

June 8, 1933 — June 28, 2022

Medardo (Leonard) Delgado was born to Carmen and Frank Delgado, who were early settlers on Royal Slope where the family cleared the land and established their farm. He passed away on June 28, 2022 after a long illness.

Medardo was born in Kansas City, Kansas, the second of 13 children. As a child he worked the fields with his parents and lived in “the colony" in Mitchell, Nebraska with other migrant laborers until his father decided to become a tenant farmer. The family moved out of the colony and began working tenant farms in Wyoming and Nebraska. Eventually, having heard about the land grants in central Washington, Medardo and his father traveled to Washington state where they obtained their farm on Royal Slope and moved the family.

Medardo's mother stressed education to all of her children. After completing the educational pursuits of a diesel mechanics certification and an associate’s degree from Seattle Community College, he eventually graduated from Central Washington University with a bachelor of arts degree in education, having majored in Spanish and minored in sociology. His field was secondary education. While at CWU he realized there was a need for classes oriented to Chicanos and the educational problems they face. He was asked to carry out a feasibility study researching Chicano studies programs at other colleges. As a result he introduced a plan for a Chicano Studies Program at CWU which included courses in Chicano literature and Chicano-related courses in music, anthropology and sociology.

Throughout his life he worked hard to help people in all walks of life understand culture diversity, saying, "Culture diversity is not a mixture of people but a variety of individuals, each belonging to a specific group with whom they share distinct culture traits. It is essential to understand each other's culture if we are to continue to complement and contribute one to the other.” Medardo carried this philosophy with him wherever he went, including on the job. Upon retirement from the Department of Labor and Industries, he volunteered for many years with the Whatcom County Youth Group and the Whatcom Hispanic Organization to promote acceptance and understanding between cultures.

Medardo is survived by his wife Kathleen Russell Delgado; children Andres (Misty), Gabril, Brigetta Emmel (Chris) and Amy Edelen; brother Frank (Sherry); sisters Sister Francesca, Mary Hesting (Bob), Lola Monroe (Richard), Lydia Mullineaux and Sally Petree (Jack); sisters-in-law Linda and Selmaann; grandchildren Austin, Zachary and Samantha; and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his brothers Joe, Pete and Simon; sister Frances Shipe; sister-in-law Elvita; and brothers-in-law Mike Shipe and Rodney Mullineaux.

A funeral Mass will be held for Medardo on July 22, 2022 at Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church in Moses Lake with the Rosary being prayed at 10 a.m. and Mass beginning at 10:30 a.m.. Burial will take place at the Royal Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Royal City, Washington immediately following the Mass.

The greatest gift we can give in memory of Medardo is to carry forth his vision towards culture diversity. As he stated in a speech he once gave, “Take time now to understand one another as a path towards joy and knowledge. You will teach each other to sing your songs, share your sorrows and love what you love. You will communicate with one another what you do and why you feel as you feel. Then you can decide whether you want to stay or just pass through. In either case you will have more than what you came with. You will have taken a step towards understanding one another."

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