Owners of the Hispanic, family-owned businesses on North Beckham, East Gentry and Palace Avenue in Tyler said they felt the need to support the protest and bring attention to immigrant-owned businesses in Tyler.
"It was a sign of support," Aaron Villneuva said. If there were no immigrants, "we'd be missing all the different food and services they provide. It's all about the culture and family, and we're supporting it."
Villneuva and his father have been in business for more than three years. Although they didn't open for business, they were on hand at their businesses Thursday to talk with customers who arrived for dinner about their decision to support the protest.
Chris Moore, co-owner of Tamales el Pollo, supported Villneuva's decision. He said he hopes it will make people realize that Hispanic business is important to the community and without immigrants in this country people would miss the services and contributions they make.
- LouAnna Campbell