He Loved His Red Fusquinha

Remembering Celio Salgueiro
From his daughter, Joselia Reis Dinaj
Composer: Jon Grier

My father, Celio Salgueiro
Came to the America,1982,
a better life to bloom
For many years we were apart
Until one day, he sent for us, until one day he sent for use

When I arrived in my new home, a small apartment
my father, Celio Salgueiro,
Gave me a gallon jug of coins he had saved–

A gift to begin my new life in America
my new life in America

By the East River he loved to walk,
He found a patch of dirt ashore, he made it flower.
My father, Celio Salgueiro,
grew pumpkins Mama cooked,
pumpkins that Mama cooked.

Schooled through 3rd grade,
He could not read, and barely write,
But with his hands could fix ‘most anything

He fixed everything on a red Volkswagen beetle
It was ruby red, his baby45 years
Called it Fusca, Fusquinha, Fusca, Fusquinha.


He died alone – it breaks me to my heart.
On a respirator breathed his last;
My brother saw him ‘fore he passed
and put the phone to his ear:
“I love you,” I said, “I love you,” I said.
to my father, Celio Salgueiro.


Celio Sagueiro died of Covid-19 on April 24, 2020. He was 76.