Close to 100 readers had this to say after reading about Petronila Morales’ journey to America, her eventual citizenship and the success of her restaurant: “Congratulations.”

Social media and website comments were overwhelming in support of the New Bedford immigrant, who left Guatemala as a teenager fearing for her safety.

“Best story ever,” Mark Olsen posted on our website. “… a great life story to celebrate.”

Here is a sampling of what readers had to say:

“Great story, though hair-raising! I am so happy that some of our neighbors have met with success after so many hardships. It breaks my heart to hear of those left behind, so it is a real pleasure to hear Morales’ story.”

— Glenn Williams

“She's a clear example of Latinos who come to improve themselves and help the country's economy. I feel proud of her.”

— Erick Ramos Mendoza

“I remember driving by and watching ICE pull people from Michael Bianco's raid. I volunteered at the Lady of Guadalupe Church with my daughter, who kept the children occupied with activities while we interviewed and advised families torn apart. Children were left home with no parents returning. I remember Ted Kennedy, John Kerry and several Massachusetts politicians walking into the church basement to hear the concerns from victims' families. It was heartbreaking to see. Your story uplifted me. I saw the struggle. Congratulations! God is Good. Amen.”

— Donna Laliberte

“Best story ever. Great writing — and a great life story to celebrate. I live in California, but visit relatives in Boston often. I’ll now make a point to swing down to New Bedford to enjoy Tortilliera Guatemalteco’s offerings.

— Mark Olsen

“What an amazing story! We will definitely support.”

— Denise Madeira

“Se lo merecen. Felicidades. Dios los bendiga grandemente (They deserve it. Congratulations. God bless you greatly.)”

— Ana Hernández

“So happy for her achievements and dedication.To live the American Dream …”

— Ron Stanley

“Congratulations! That’s an amazing story of perseverance.”

— David Gonsalves

“I look forward to trying the food at Tortilleria Guatemalteco.”

— Lisa Rahn

“Congratulations. God bless America and all the people. Good luck to your business!”

— Isabel Sousa

“I’m so glad for her success! What a positive addition to this country!”

— Margaret Amaral

Read Eleonora Bianchi’s story about Petronila Morales’ journey to America here. And offer your own comments on The Light’s Facebook page or in an email to:

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