"Let no one hold you back from entering these doors of opportunity."
Nov.18, 1919BirthFall 1925Entered West Ward ElementarySpring 1935Valedictorian of Harlingen High SchoolFall 1935Entered University of Texas- AustinFall 1939Entered UT Medical School-GalvestonDec. 18, 1942Graduated UT Medical School with Honors1942-1945Served in US Army- 1ST LieutenantFeb. 19, 1945Married Annabel Alberts1945Began Medical Practice in Rio Hondo, Texas1948-1951Served on Rio Hondo School Board1953First Hispanic to join Harlingen Country Club1954Moved Medical Practice to Harlingen, Texas1955-1961Served on Harlingen School Board1960-1961President of Harlingen School BoardMay 1964-April 1974Served 10 years on TX College of A&I Board of Directors1974-1975Served on Valley Baptist Hospital Medical Staff BoardDec. 11, 1977Death
· Our campus offers STEM focused Curriculum and Activities
· Our campus offers Technology Initiatives and a fully equipped Information Literacy Center (ILC)
· We work closely with community partners to offer our students new opportunities to excel inside and outside the classroom.We have strong mentor, counseling and literacy programs. (Community/Staff/Student Mentor Programs, Therapy Dog Counseling Program)Biography of Dr. Hesiquio Rodriguez
Dr. Hesiquio Rodriguez was born on November 18, 1919, in McAllen, Texas. Raised in a family of five to a strict, hardworking Mexican immigrant without the love and affection of his mother who had died soon after his birth.
He entered West Ward Elementary School in Harlingen at the age of six speaking Spanish. Due to the language barrier, he failed first and second grades; however; his passion for learning drove him to conquer the English language. and excel at such a high level that he graduated from Harlingen HIgh School as valedictorian at the age of fifteen.
Hesiquio entered the University of Texas at Austin where he completed his premed studies and attended the University of Texas Medical School in Galveston, graduating with honors at the age of twenty-two.After medical school, he served in the U.S. Army from 1942 to 1945. During this time he interned in St. Louis, Missouri and New York City, New York. While in St. Louis he met a psychiatric nurse named Annabel Alberts who later became his wife.
In 1945, Dr. Rodriguez and his wife, Ann moved to Rio Hondo, Texas, where they began practicing family medicine. Being dedicated to his patients, many who were unable to pay for services rendered, he would accept tamales, pan dulce, tortillas, watermelon, handmade items, etc., in lieu of cash payment. This was his common practice until his death.
Moving back to Harlingen in 1954, he continued his general practice, which included emergency calls and performing surgery, opening his practice to medical students and acting as a teaching doctor.
His desire to help others did not stop with medicine. He recognized inequities in the Rio Hondo school system and brought equal rights issues to public attention. He was elected to the Rio Hondo School Board and later, to Harlingen School Board using his service to fight against the injustices of the time: segregation and inequality of education for the Mexican and African-American people of South Texas, thus being instrumental in improving the conditions of the schools and the curriculums for both districts.
His efforts for quality education in South Texas did not go unnoticed. In May of 1964, he was appointed by Governor John Connally to the Board of Directors of Texas College of Arts and Industries. During his ten year tenure on the board of Texas A & I he was appointed and reappointed by three different governors: John Connally, Preston Smith, and Dolph Briscoe.
After he resigned from the Board of Directors of Texas A & I, Dr. Rodriguez spent the next year serving on the Valley Baptist Hospital Medical Staff Board, honored to be among his colleagues and friends.The recurring theme in his life was responding to medical situations no matter where he was of what he was doing. Even when admitted for dehydration, his wife found him in the delivery room with one of his patients who had gone into labor, bringing a new life into the world which was his favorite part of medicine.Dr. Rodriguez was the first Hispanic member of the Harlingen Country Club, joining in 1953 and breaking another barrier for minorities. He was an active member until his death.Dr. Rodriguez and his wife raised four children with love and devotion teaching his family acceptance and tolerance by setting an example of his beliefs: that every human being had a place in this world and his home was always open to all walks of life, greeting everyone with a smile, a handshake, and a hello.
On December 11, 1977, at the age of 58, his life came to a tragic end. On a hunting trip with a good friend and colleague, both succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning from the generator of the motor home they were staying. Although many years have passed since his death, he is still remembered for his strength of character, devotion to his profession,his plight to improve the conditions and standards for all schools, his compassion and gentle manner.
Despite the many barriers in his life, racial, language, and economic, lack of an emotional or intellectual support system Hesiquio overcame them through the power of knowledge and love for his fellow man. He often said" Nobody helped me, but nobody held me back." His journey began through the front doors of an elementary school, the doors of opportunity and nobody held him back. Our school is named for a man who embraced education. May our doors of opportunity be opened to the children of Harlingen and may they aspire to follow the steps of Dr. Hesiquio Rodriguez to embrace education and knowledge to make a difference in our community.