El Salvadoran Immigrant Finds Home, Community in Silver Spring (Video)

He traveled to the United States when he was just a teenager, leaving his home country of El Salvador to find a better life and a safe place to call home.

“I knew that if I stayed I would have ended up either with the Guerrillas or with the army and that’s why I decided to take the journey because I heard so many beautiful things about the United States and that’s why I decided to take off,” said Jose Melara, a businessman who owns Cyber Web Latino, a computer and electronics repair and retail store with locations in Langley Park and Silver Spring.

When he finally made it to the Mexican border, Melara faced the challenge of getting past immigration.

“They caught me like three times trying to cross the border, but I talked like a Mexican and I said I was from Mexico so they helped me out to cross the border back,” he said.”

Then one day, when the timing was right, he made it to the United States, more than three years after leaving his family.

“It was a good feeling here in America, people were so kind,” he said. “I don’t know the experience of everyone but in my experience I remember that people were like ‘can I help you?’ ”

Now a U.S. Citizen, he decided that he also wanted to give back and help others. He started his business to give back to the Hispanic community in Montgomery County. As part of his services, he offers free Internet access to children needing a safe place to do their homework.

But even through the challenges he’s faced, Jose Melara says he’s grateful for what he learned throughout his journey.

“I learned that if you work hard and you put your mind on it, you can get anything,” Melara said.

For more information about Melara and his business Cyber Web Latino, visit his website here.

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Valerie Bonk

About Valerie Bonk

Valerie Bonk is a multimedia reporter and community engagement specialist with Montgomery Community Media (MCM).


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