A community came together Friday night for Lucio Perez, a local Guatemalan immigrant fighting deportation.
The Pioneer Valley Workers Center is hoping to deliver 1,000 letters to ICE officials in support of Lucio returning home to his family.
Perez has been living inside the First Congregational Church in Amherst where he's been seeking refuge inside since last year to avoid deportation.
Perez and the Pioneer Valley Workers Center hopes the letters will help get his case dropped, so he can be back with his family soon.
Lucio Perez has been in the United States since 1999 with his wife and children who were born here.
"For any father it's hard to be separated from one's family, but we're trying every day to stay strong," said Perez.
Perez came to United States illegally, and under President Trump's immigration policies, immigration officials are trying to deport him back to Guatemala.
While Perez awaits his case to be heard, the Pioneer Valley Workers Center is asking for the community's help.
"We're hoping that showing so much wide spread community support, we know so many people in the valley are with Lucio and want to see him home with his family. Those letters will be the extra support needed to encourage his case," said Margaret Sawyer with the Pioneer Valley Workers Center.
The workers center is then hoping to deliver the letters to the ICE offices in Springfield sometime in April.
"He's one of forty people around the country who are living in public sanctuary while their cases are decided," Sawyer noted.
Perez said he is thankful for all of the support he's received.
"I want to give thanks to god for the workers center for supporting me and helping me with my case and give thanks to this church," Perez added.
The workers center said they are hoping his case gets decided soon but in the meantime, if you'd like to write a letter for Lucio please mail it or email a letter to the following places:
Pioneer Valley Workers Center
20 Hampton Avenue Suite #200
Northampton, MA, 01060
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