Thousands show up to see President Obama in Kern County

The President's message was well received as thousands filled the grounds at La Paz for the dedication of the Cesar Chavez National Monument.

The President's message was well received as thousands filled the grounds at La Paz for the dedication of the Cesar Chavez National Monument.

Some traveled days to get there. Some woke up in the middle of the night, just for this.

"When you talk about Cesar Chavez, you talk about La Paz and Barack Obama, what could be better?" said Martha Hernandez from Oxnard.

"It's an historical event. The fact that they are going to put Cesar Chavez and his foundation on the map," said Reville Niccolls of Keene.

There were 7,000 people from 25 states, 1,500 of them were farm workers.

"The community is here in force," said Professor Gonzalo Santos of Cal State Bakersfield.

Some had personal connections, like Donato Ventura, who used to work with Chavez.

"He trained me to serve farm workers," Donato Ventura of Frazier Park.

Others fought in his movement.

"I went in the strike in 1965," said Maria Saluado-Magana, original member of the UFW. "The 11 members of my family took a part in this union."

Some were students, like these choir kids from Cesar Chavez Elementary School in Bakersfield sent to sing at the dedication. They were also thrilled to see the President.

"I'm just so excited...I've only see him on TV or pictures," said Kylie Lopez, fifth grader at Cesar Chavez Elementary School.

"I came with my daughter, who's 15 years old, and I think she will remember this for the rest of her life," said Santos.

The Secret Service watched from the roof, as a mariachi band played below, livening up the crowds, who woke up so early to be here.

"We only got up at 4:30 and we left Bakersfield at 5:30 this morning," said Hernandez.

"I am a little bit sleep deprived because we had to get up at 4:30," said Niccolls.

But to many, the early wake up call was worth it to see Cesar Chavez and also Latinos honored by the President.

"My parents are not alive anymore and they are not going to see this thing they are not going to see this dream come true," said Saluado-Magana.

Organizers say the majority of people they let into Monday's event were from Kern County.

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