Charley Trujillo was raised in Corcoran, in a typical Latino farm working for the family. Charley Trujillo worked in the fields with his family and attended Corcoran High school. Growing up in the 1960s he endured Corporal Punishment from the educators for speaking Spanish in the classroom. He faced discrimination in school and out of this family and fellow Chicanos. The segregation was emotionally damaging; however, it helped Charley preserve his Hispanic culture despite being a second-generation Latino.
Two weeks after graduating from Corcoran high school in 1968, Charley Trujillo enlisted in the U.S. Army. Charley was not drafted, he chose to sign up for the army for the experience and to mature out of his hometown. He served in Germany as an infantryman in 1969. From there he volunteered for Vietnam. He served there as a sergeant in the infantry, earning both a Purple Heart and Bronze Star Medal. During his time in Vietnam, a piece of shrapnel landed in his right eye destroying his eye and making him a Disabled War Veteran. He served the U.S. Army from 1968 until 1970.
Charley Trujillo had a difficult time on his arrival back to America. The first thing Charley did when coming out of the military was going to church and light a candle for his then, recently deceased grandmother and gave thanks. He was then bedridden with malaria three different times. Charley realized how much the war negatively affected all those involved and joined the Vietnam Veterans Against the War. Once relieved of illness Charley went to work in the fields, however, he decided that he did not want to do menial work for the rest of his life. Charley was able to pursue an education through the G.I. Bill and working part-time jobs. He attended Fresno City College from 1971 to 1972 and then transferred to UC Berkeley where he received his BA in Chicano studies as a class of 1976. He continued in the Teaching Credential Program in 1977. From there he continued his education at San Jose State University earning his MA in Chicano Studies.
(bio info gathered form Charley Trujillo’s Wikipedia page, see link below)
To listen to our conversation with Charley Trujillo visit this link: https://ricosolstudios.com/audio_players.html
Visit Charley Trujillo at CHUSMA HOUSE http://www.chusmahouse.com/