As part of a celebration to mark Peru's 202nd year of independence, City of Pasco Mayor Blanche Barajas received quite an honor.

Pasco is named after the region of Pasco, Peru. Consulate Miguel Angel Velazquez's great-grandfather fought for Peru's independence as one of the generals in the war against Spain. Medals issued during that time in the 1800's were lost.

"Mr. Velasquez, being the consulate representation of Peru in Seattle, his family sponsored the re-creation of the medal. This medal was given out to individuals for going above and beyond in their field in defending their country." Mayor Blanche Barajas said.

Last weekend, Mayor Barajas and City Councilman Irving Brown traveled to Seattle to present a special proclamation to the Consulate of Peru. During their visit, Consulate Velazquez awarded the medal of Resilience and Valor to Mayor Barajas for her work as the first Latina mayor in Pasco.

Pasco Mayor honored at proclamation

"When they read my story, coming from humble beginnings, being the first Latina mayor in Pasco, and for the changes we're doing in Pasco, I was somehow nominated, and the recipient of the fourth medal issued." Mayor Barajas said.

The recognition comes six months after the city of Pasco welcomed a delegation from Peru.

"We had a great visit. We gave them a tour of the city. They had some firefighters from Pasco, Peru with them and so we just give them a tour of the fire stations here," Mayor Barajas added. "We're building a relationship, a partnership, and so their independence anniversary is coming up and they extended the invite. We prepared the proclamation to help them celebrate, to commemorate their hard work."

Mayor Barajas says the medal was like a cherry on top of a wonderful visit. She says it came as a complete surprise.

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