It took Reyna Grande three tries before she was able to illegally cross the border from Mexico into the United States. She was 10.
The first time, she was so sick with a fever that her father had to carry her on his back. They got caught.
On the second attempt, they crouched in the bushes next to a dead man covered with flies. Her father said the man had probably been murdered for his money by the coyote leading him across the border. They were caught again.
The third time Reyna made it. Now 30 years later she is a college graduate, a teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District, and the author of the forthcoming novel Across A Hundred Mountains.
California Authors has an essay of Reyna’s, describing her childhood, flight to the U.S. and thoughts on the current debate on immigration.