Carson celebrates Itliong Day as it pushes for national recognition

CARSON, CA — Philippine flags and pride have been flying high throughout Carson for the past month.

“Being a Filipino we have to support our heritage,” said Vicky Soong.

One of the highlights of the month — Larry Itliong Day, a parade honoring the late farm worker that led the battle for worker rights in the 1960’s.

This year, the city held an art contest that gave non-Filipinos a chance to learn about Philippine American history.

“This was when Larry Itliong was born. This is the Filipino flag. This is when everyone is giving him support,” said Olivia Okoye.

Eight years ago, Carson became the first US city to commemorate October 25 as Larry Itliong Day.

Earlier this year with the California state legislature, it designated Itliong’s birthday day as a state holiday.

Larry’s son, Johnny, hopes to eventually make it a national holiday.

“It’s just grown more and more, more cities, state of California, my next goal is to go see Trump and get Larry recognized as a federal holiday,” said Johnny. “As far as my gameplan goes, go to the White House, knock on the door… I’ve got a couple politicians I’m trying to work with.”

Carson city officials say while they hope the movement for a nationwide holiday gains traction. They’re also making moves to designate Itliong Day as a non-school-paid city holiday.

While Itliong days are cause for celebration, supporters have also been on a crusade to name schools, streets, and landmarks after Larry Itliong and the other labor leaders, hoping to designate lasting memorials for communities to honor the Delano Manongs all year round.

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