New murals in Alpine aim to show support toward Native Americans

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Published: May. 30, 2023 at 8:23 PM CDT
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ALPINE, Texas (KOSA) -Two murals were unveiled at Alpine to show awareness toward missing and murdered indigenous women.

The Native American community use a red hand over the mouth as a symbol that they’re voices aren’t being heard.

But a local resident wants to make a change one step at a time.

Which is why she’s taken the initiative to work with an artist to paint murals around the area.

“I’m a little angry. To be honest with you. How is this in 2023 slipping through the cracks that we have such inaccurate records.” said Lori Griffin, an Alpine resident.

Those records that Griffin is talking about, are the missing and murdered indigenous women and relatives’ epidemic.

Since 2016, over 5,000 American Indian and Alaskan Native women and girls were reported missing.

However, only 116 of those cases were recorded by the Department of Justice.

Moved by those statistics, she decided to be the voice for the voiceless, and asked Monty Welt to depict the image in her head.

“We have a responsibility to tell a story. And let people know maybe some of the things that are going on that they’re not aware of. So that responsibility, whenever Lori reached out to me, I felt like it was something I had to do,” said Mural Artist Monty Welt.

The murals named “Unheard” and “Let there be Hope”, are just the beginning of a trend that these residents want the public to know about.

Not just to influence others to learn about what they may not be aware of, but also about their history.

Norma Hinojos-Olivos, has murals on her home that shows her culture.

“It’s just culture. So we can bring them back and think about our ancestors.” said Alpine resident, Norma Hinojos-Olivos.

At the end of the day, the message these residents want to send is clear.

“There is hope, and we hope that these sisters, that they know that we’re going to represent them. And we’re not going to give up on them. And that we’re going to try and get the word out.” said Griffin.

These residents do plan to paint more murals, whether it’s on people’s homes, buildings or ally ways in Alpine.