Around Town: News from your neighbors

Around Town: News from your neighbors|Around Town: News from your neighbors
Maria Esther Flores Santiago

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Hello readers and welcome to another edition of Around Town!

Bronx Science Selection

Farhan Sreejan, a 13-year-old Parkchester resident, recently gained admittance to the prestigious Bronx High School of Science.

Sreejan, whose parents immigrated from Bangladesh when he was a baby with visions for a bright future, got help navigating the complex New York City education and selective high school admissions process with the help of non-profit Breakthrough New York.

BNY helps talented students from low-income families with educational support from middle school through college graduation and into careers, according to the organization, which submitted this item.

103rd Birthday

Maria Esther Flores Santiago turned 103-years-old on Friday, June 26. She is cared for by Bronx Jewish Community Council Home Attendant Services, which sent the Bronx Times the following biography:

Born on June 26, 1916 to Jesus Allende and Justa Flores in San Juan, PR, Maria was raised in Santurce, PR along with her older brother and two younger sisters.

She loved going to school but after the eighth grade had to drop out to help raise her two younger siblings when her mother had to work to support the family.

Maria always dreamed of moving to the states to join her three siblings who were already living in New York.

Maria and daughter Esilda set sail on the George Washington Steam ship to New York on June 16, 1946.

In March of 1947, Maria gave birth to her child, Esther.

Maria worked a few odd jobs until she landed a permanent position in Julius Schmidt Laboratories, as a packer from 1954 to 1960.

At that time Maria stopped working to help raise Esilda’s first child.

Maria ended up helping to raise and nurture five grandchildren, eleven great-grandchildren, and fourteen great-great grandchildren.

Pageant Contestant

This summer, Brianah Bezada of the Bronx will compete for the national title of USA National Preteen as well as a $5000 scholarship at the national pageant this summer.

Brianah who is the reigning New York preteen in the pageant will travel to Disney World form Sunday, July 7 at Saturday, July 13 for the highly anticipated USA National Miss Scholarship Pageant.

Reach Reporter Patrick Rocchio at (718) 260-4597. E-mail him at Follow him on Twitter @patrickfrocchio.
Farhan Sreejan
Photo courtesy of Break Through New York

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