Families & Residents


Arballo Family

The Arballo family of El Modena has been part of the community since the early 1900s.  Helen Valenzuela was born on September 11, 1917 in El Modena, California, where she grew up.  In 1939, she married Albert Arballo, who was known to friends and family as “Boney.”  The family lived in El Modena and participated in a variety of community events.  They were patrons and members of La Purisima Catholic Church.

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Mireles/Castro/Yorba Family

The Mireles family of El Modena, California can trace its roots back to the Juaneño Indians of Southern California.  The family has been part of El Modena since its founding.  Like many of the other families, they farmed their own land and also worked as orange pickers in the many orange groves in the City of Orange.  The family has preserved a vast number of photographs over the years that include photographs of schools, family events, and outings.  Many of the family men also served their country through various military campaigns.

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Ramirez Family

Lorenzo Ramirez and his family occupy a unique place in El Modena history with their participation in the Mendez et al. v. Westminster et al. desegregation court case.  Aside from representing the community of El Modena in this very important case, Lorenzo Ramirez also worked with the local unions and was involved in a variety of community organizations and events. Like many other families in El Modena, they also served their country in the miltary.

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Torres Family

The Torres family of El Modena, like many other families, served their country through military campaigns.  They were also very well known in the community, participating in community, cultural, and religious events.  Robert Torres, Sr. was involved in community organizations such as LULAC.  His sister Caroline Torres testified as a young girl in the Mendez et al. v. Westminster et al. desegregation court case.  Robert Torres, Jr. has recorded many family stories and contributed to the Shades of Orange: El Modena collection.

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