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Francisco Buckley was born in 1940 in the Canal Zone. He is a descendent of Jamaican grandparents who moved to Panama to work on the Panama Canal and railroad. His father and mother were both born in Panama; his father was a canal worker, and his mother was an employee at the commissary. His first language was English but, like many who assimilated in that area, he began speaking Spanish, which is inherent in that region. In Francisco’s youth, he struggled with an English/Spanish American/Panamanian identity conflict, which may have never been fully resolved. Francisco began playing music when he was child and, despite opposition from his family, he was determined to be a musician and went on to play with some of the best bands in the area. He eventually formed his own band and continues to pursue his passion. Francisco now has a wife and a son, and he speaks of life with excitement and anticipation about the future, hoping to inspire those who will follow after him.
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