Graciela Tiscareno-Sato’s son saw her in her flight suit the night before a Veterans Day event at his preschool and began asking her what all the different patches meant.
After she went about explain what all the different patches meant, he headed off and left with the words “I love you, Captain Mama.” That interaction inspired Tiscareno-Sato to write, “Good Night, Captain Mama” , the first bilingual children’s book about women serving in the military.
Tiscareno-Sato was the keynote speaker at Chemeketa Community College’s Veterans Day event, held in the Student Center at the Salem campus on Nov. 6.
In her presentation, Tiscareno-Sato talked about her background as the child of Mexican immigrants and entering the Air Force, eventually reaching the rank of captain and flying a KC-135 refueling tanker, including being part of an all-female KC-135 crew while stationed in England.
Along with Tiscareno-Sato, the event featured the All-Nations Native American Color Guard presenting the flags of the United States, POW-MIA, and branches of the military.
Chemeketa student Anthony Dixon sung the national anthem, and student Gennifer Walker presented a traditional Native American honor song.
The event was sponsored by Multicultural Student Services, Veterans’ Services, Veterans’ Club, the President’s Office and the Office of Diversity & Equality.