Being a South Sider means having pride in where you come from

Despite all the changes that have happened at Brooks over the decades—from Air Force Base to mixed-use development—the atmosphere of community has remained the same. That’s how longtime South Side resident Pat Jasso feels. 

“The South Side has arrived and Brooks is a big part of that,” she said.

Like a lot of people who lived and worked near Brooks when the Air Force Base closed, Pat was sad and worried about the future of the area. There was a widespread feeling of anxiety for what was going to happen to the area. But when Brooks Development Authority was created and the new vision for Brooks was announced, Pat was optimistic.

“I was really glad when they were able to get things going,” she said. “The ongoing process of Brooks’ growth is really exciting to me.”

Pat, who moved to San Antonio in the 1960s and attended Highlands High School, was in the Air Force Reserves for 15 years. While she didn’t do her training at Brooks, she felt welcomed by the tight-knit military community of the area. That togetherness is still alive today and has been opened up to welcome even more people.

As a mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, the aspect of Brooks’ growth that is most important to Pat is the expanded education options. Young learners from PreK age to medical school can expand their minds all in the Brooks neighborhood.

“The next generation has so many opportunities for the future,” she said. 

Since her family still lives in the area, Pat spends a lot of time at the Brooks landmarks, like Mitchell Lake Audubon. When she has loved ones come to visit, she loves to show off her South Side by taking them to the Historic Missions, Hangar 9 adapted from a former airplane hangar, or Embassy Suites, the area’s only luxury hotel. 

We’re finally able to do all this fun stuff, and we no longer have to leave the South Side to do it,” Pat said. 

As her family grows, the matriarch works hard to ensure the next generation is proud of the legacy of the South Side. 

“I want them to never forget that where they grew up is apart of them,” she said.

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