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Local family organizes Spring River cleanup

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Elijah Diaz, center, and Jason Alvarez, right, put trash in a bag as Elijah’s grandmother, Esperanza Martinez, works behind them Saturday in Cahoon Park. (Juno Ogle Photo)

Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

It was already warm in Cahoon Park at 9 a.m. Saturday, but that didn’t stop the enthusiasm for the work a Roswell family volunteered for.

Jacob and Esperanza Martinez were joined by their grandsons and a friend to pick up trash out of the Spring River channel in the park.

Jacob Martinez said he and his wife were walking in the park a couple of weeks ago and as they approached the river, saw a lot of trash.

“My wife had the idea that we should get a group together and come clean it up,” he said.

Their grandsons — Elijah Diaz, Alex Torrez, Jeremiah Torrez and Josiah Torrez — were enthusiastic about the idea, Jacob said. The family had been to the Pecos River as a way to get out of the house but away from crowds during the pandemic, and the boys wanted to organize a cleanup there.

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“When we brought this idea, of course, it was a no-brainer. They just wanted to do it,” Jacob said.

They were joined Saturday morning by Elijah’s best friend, Jason Alvarez.

Jacob had approached Jim Burress, city of Roswell director of special services, about their idea. Burress encouraged them and provided some cleaning supplies including trash bags, gloves and some tools.

As the family worked their way down the channel, Jacob and Esperanza advised the boys to tell them if they found any syringes and to not pick them up. They had a special box for the adults to dispose of them.

Several people passing by on the trail above them waved to the family and thanked them for their work.

Elijah said he hoped people who saw what they did might be inspired to help keep the city clean.

“A lot of people could change their ideas about pollution and everything. More people could consider recycling after this,” he said.

City/RISD reporter Juno Ogle can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or reporter04@rdrnews.com.

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