This Upland woman's Dia De Los Muertos altar takes over her living room

Fajardo created her first altar in 2008 and it was on a small table.

Eric Resendiz Image
Saturday, October 29, 2022
This Dia De Los Muertos altar takes over an entire living room
An Upland woman's Day of the Dead altar has grown 10 times its size since she created her first one nearly 15 years ago.

UPLAND, Calif. (KABC) -- It's that time of year when families who commemorate Dia De Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, create altars, or ofrendas, in honor of their loved ones who have passed away. Upland resident Diana Fajardo's altar spreads across her living room and splits into three pieces.

"It is very emotional every year. It's the time of the year I get to bring all of my loved ones out," said Fajardo. "It expanded because I have a lot of family members that have passed."

"I am happy for my daughter that she does all this and she gets all excited about it," said Anita Chabolla, Fajardo's mother.

Fajardo said it takes about two weeks to build her altar and that it helps her reflect on the memories she has of her loved ones.

"As I bring out each picture I say hello to them," Fajardo said. "I feel their souls. I feel them in my heart. I feel them around me."

Fajardo's altar hasn't always been this big that it takes over her living room. Her first one was on a small table nearly 15 years ago. It was in honor of her brother Jerry Fajardo.

"I loved him so much," Fajardo said. "When my brother passed I didn't know how to mourn. I didn't know 'cause I didn't have anybody passed that close to me."

That's when Fajardo's cousin Cynthia McGuire taught her how to make an altar. Fajardo said it has helped her cope with the death of her brother since his passing in 2006.

"I've always felt like this is my memory of him," Fajardo said. "I learned to rejoice it and celebrate and it's not sad anymore."

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