ESNDC Homeowner Profile: Mary

Mary Aguirre is a homeowner and life-long resident of Saint Paul’s East Side.  Mary’s parents emigrated from Mexico in the 1920’s.  She had 14 siblings – 11 brothers and 3 sisters.  Large immigrant families were not unusual, but one thing distinguishes the Aguirre family.

Ten of the Aguirre boys served in the armed forces in World War II, the Korean War,and Vietnam.  When the last brother, Joe Aguirre, left for Vietnam in 1963, his father said, “Well, that’s the last one. That’s all we got left to give our country.”  Mary remembers her mother’s tears as she watched each son go off to war—and her joy as each son returned.   


Mary raised four children of her own.  She worked at the now shuttered Whirlpool plant for 24 years.   The East Side Neighborhood Development Company (ESNDC) was referred to Mary by her daughter Barb, who ESNDC staff met at late summer school supply and backpack give away event.   Barb stated that her Mom  had to crawl up her stairs because they lacked proper railings.  Additionally, her home was in need of a great many repairs, including grab bars in her bathroom, mold removal, internal and external painting, concrete work on her front steps and side walkway, as well as a new drainage system to prevent basement flooding.     

Then ESNDC, through its home repair resource bundling program, brought in Dayton’s Bluff Neighborhood Housing Services, Habitat for Humanity’s A Brush with Kindness, and Rebuilding Together Twin Cities. Repairs were completed at no cost to Mary, including the basement issue. ESNDC takes pride in providing services to residents on the St. Paul’s East Side.