Historic Virgin of Guadalupe mural vandalized

An historic neighborhood mural on Lemon St. across from the Maple Community Center and Lemon Park suffered extensive damage from vandalism this week. In earlier damage, several months ago, the face of the depiction of the Virgin of Guadalupe was scraped away. The section showing Juan Diego, the Indian visionary to whom the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared, is undamaged.

Photo by Christian Albert Albrecht.

The Virgin of Guadalupe mural was painted in 1979, and for decades has been a beloved neighborhood icon where people leave “ofrendas,” offerings of flowers and candles, in memory of loved ones.  Because of its setback underneath the pedestrian bridge that crosses Lemon Street, it’s not as well-known as the rest of the mural series that faces Lemon directly and has always been somewhat secluded and protected.

“It’s so sad that anyone would vandalize such a beautiful mural,” said Councilmember Ahmad Zahra, in whose district the mural resides. “I’m truly heartbroken. We’ve been trying to restore these since 2019—a task made harder due to the pandemic and our City’s financial problems. I’ve started seeking private funding and was hoping to seek community support this year to resume the work. If anyone would like to help, please reach out to me. We can and we will bring Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe and the other murals back.”

To contact Councilmember Zahra e-mail