To mark the end of this newspaper’s 16-month immigration and border series, the Victoria Advocate invites you to a special event.
Want to attend?
For one night, a sheriff, priest and famed international journalist will share a stage and answer your questions about trafficking in the Crossroads.
The Fatal Funnel Finale, named for the newspaper’s oft-controversial series, is set for Tuesday, Sept. 1 at 7 p.m. The free event is at the Leo J. Welder Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Victoria.
Dr. Tim Hudson, University of Houston-Victoria president, will begin the night by discussing a song he wrote and produced. The song is based on the story of the 19 illegal immigrants found dead in Victoria on May 14, 2003. The event hosts the first public unveiling of the song, which is set to video.
This special event will also detail the scope of the 16-month newspaper project – from trips to Mexican drug cartel hotbeds, stops throughout the Valley and back to the local scene of the historic immigration tragedy. A short film will look back at the work involved, the topics covered and the places visited.
Following the music video, the short project summation film and talks from an Advocate staffer, the event transitions to a roundtable discussion. Speakers include:
Sheriff T. Michael O’Connor, who scoured his land for tragedy survivors in May 2003 and who now battles trafficking daily.
Fr. Stan DeBoe, a local priest who worked in Colombia during a brutal drug war. He was a Congressional advisor for foreign affairs and human rights issues such as human trafficking and immigration.
Macarena Hernandez, an acclaimed former Dallas Morning News and San Antonio Express-News immigration reporter and columnist. Hernandez also co-produced projects for PBS’s “Frontline.”
After the discussion, the floor opens to questions from the audience.
O’Connor, who dubbed the highways that lead from Victoria to Mexico the “Fatal Funnel,” said this event offers residents a look behind the scenes.
“This gives people a follow-up on the first newspaper presentation, the showing of the film ‘Drug Wars: Silver or Lead,’” the sheriff said, noting the December 2008 event. “Drugs and immigration are all interconnected. During this event, we can give them the rest of the story. I regard the whole issue, the trafficking, as extremely important. It affects our lives. I encourage people to get involved. At the very least, they should come to this event and ask questions.”
If you go * When: Tuesday, Sept. 1 at 7 p.m. Please arrive by 6:45 p.m.
- Where: Leo J. Welder Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Victoria.
- Ticket info: Tickets are free and available for pickup beginning Wednesday, Aug. 19, at the Victoria Advocate and Welder Center. Please limit four per pick-up.
- Remaining tickets available at the Welder Center the night of the event. Access limited to 500 guests.
For more information, contact me at 361-580-6519 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for your interest,
Advocate Public Service Editor Gabe Semenza
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