SAN BENITO, Texas (ValleyCentral) — The city of San Benito, alongside the San Benito Historical Society, unveiled the historical marker for Freddy Fender.

On Saturday, the Historical Society of San Benito, and the city revealed and dedicated a historical marker in honor of Freddy Fender in front of his childhood home on 143 Freddy Fender Lane. 

Many attended the event, including family members. His niece and nephew paid a tribute to the late singer by performing one of his famous songs, “Before The Next Teardrop Falls.”

“I think it’s very it’s very heartwarming that he was able to be here while they were honoring him with the water tower. He was still with us, he was still alive,” Fender’s niece, Margarita Huerta said. “There are all kinds of different things that show us that, you know, San Benito is 100% behind Freddie Fender and the rest of the family.” 

Huerta mentioned how the city has made many land marks commemorating Fender and his presence in the city such as, the Freddy Fender lane, a museum and now the historical marker.

Baldemar Garza Huerta, later to be known as “Freddy Fender”, was born on June 4, 1937 in San Benito.

In his late teens, he served in the U.S. Marine Corps and later returned to music, performing throughout South Texas under a variety of stage names, settling with “Freddy Fender” in 1959.

“[Freddy Fender] would wear a T-shirt, representing San Benito, and he will mention, send greetings to from San Benito from wherever he was. There was something very important for us to that he put us on the map worldwide,” Mayor of San Benito, Ricardo Guerra said. “It was something that, it’s very, very humbling that we were able to do this dedication to him.”

He performed in different music festivals, like ACL in Austin, for different presidents and even had a star placed on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

“We have people from all over the world come to our museum and say, we are about Freddy Fender a long time ago in Sweden, in Germany, and in Brazil. We want to see Freddy Fender, where he lived and where he grew up, and that’s why we’re here at the museum,” Treasurer of the San Benito Historical Society said. “Freddy Fender brings out the whole world to San Benito, and San Benito enjoys hosting the world.”

The city has honored Freddy Fender with his painting on the city’s water tower, a museum and his grave at the San Benito Cemetery.