Laredoan makes Aggie History as first Hispanic Head Yell Leader
LAREDO, TX (KGNS) - It’s been the chance of a lifetime for one young Laredoan living out a childhood dream as Memo Salinas has served as head yell leader for Texas A&M this season but the journey to get to this spot wasn’t an easy one.
Salinas says growing up he was brainwashed and only knew that he wanted to go to one school and that was Texas A&M.
After the Aggies played their final home game of the season, Memo took at a look back on his journey on becoming one of the faces of Aggie athletics this year.
Salinas says, “Growing up, coming to A&M was like going to Disneyland for most kids. If my dad picked us up from school at I don’t know 3:30, we knew we were going to A&M, we’d change clothes in the suburban, my mom’s suburban, we’d get to town, grab pizza rolls and go straight to midnight yell and I was in love with midnight yell. I remember we’d leave, and I’d be saying the fable back to my family and I’d be doing the yells all night.”
For those unfamiliar with the tradition, yell leaders are a big deal in Aggie land leading cheers on the field for games but almost more importantly the night before at midnight yell where they get students and fans fired up for the next day’s game. It was a tradition for the Salinas Family to attend and young Memo was so taken back by what he experienced, he would even say the cheers and tales while asleep.
Salinas says, “In the middle of the night I guess I was doing one of the yells in my sleep and everyone was freaking out and my dad was like ‘alright he’s giving the fable’ so if that doesn’t show how much I legitimately dreamed about it, I literally dreamed about doing what I’m doing now.”
Being the youngest of three brothers, Memo was always a bundle of energy, especially in his younger years.
Salinas says, “My mom would always tell me ‘use your energy for good, use your energy for good’ and I’ve always had that energy but I had to figure out how to use it in the right ways and then when I did get the opportunity, I mean do it right.”
Doing it right for Salinas meant joining the core once he got to College Station and while there are dozens upon dozens of young men and women that join up, Memo had a bigger goal than just using up his energy.
Behind closed doors he told his parents about his dream to be a yell leader some day but he knew it was going to come with a lot of work.
And so, he set out hoping to stand out enough to earn the spot he had coveted since being a kid. Little did Salinas know, he’d be making some history in the process as the first Hispanic to ever hold the title of head yell leader.
Salinas says, “I never ran with that as my goal, I didn’t want to make it about me, I wanted to do it because I had a lot of energy and passion for the job. I thought I had the right heart, and my mind and heart were in the right place for it and that’s why I wanted to do it.”
Part of being an Aggie in his words is about believing in something bigger than yourself and he wants that mentality to trickle down to his hometown and help to change the mindset that some have about the Gateway City.
Salinas says,” People should know where we are from and who comes out of that town. Live like that, live to represent something bigger than you and the people watching this help the next generation get there.”
Now as he looks back at the path that got him one of the most coveted spots on campus, he can see the little things that got him to this point and all those people along the way that helped shape his path.
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