Curtis moved here from Alabama in 1956, when he was 14 years old. "I couldn't tell my mama I'm moving to Florida. She wouldn't let me. I heard about Florida through friends and I had to find out for myself".
He moved first to Miami "I l...oved to watch people swim there". He then moved to Delray and never left.
"In Alabama I made $1 a day. Here it was $7...picking fields for tomatoes, squashes. I used to pay $6 for a room here, and it cost .83 cents for a plate of food".
In 1961 he stopped working for the farm and did constructions "there were not as many farms anymore".
His scariest moment in life ended up being the most empowering one: "I fell off the canal once. I didn't know how to swim, I drowned. A guy 'grounded me' (got me out). I now know how to swim - he taught me. He saved my life and taught me how to swim. You can put me in the ocean, anywhere".
Curtis goes back to Alabama twice a year to visit his 6 sisters. His brother passed away a year ago. Mom passed away 3 months ago at 99.