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About The Latin American International Sports Hall of Fame

In the United States, there are Sports Halls of Fame that honor professional and amateur athletes in football, basketball, track, tennis, baseball and other sports. There are also ethnic halls of fame that recognize outstanding athletes from different groups including Italian, Jewish, Irish and blacks to name a few. But, there was not a single sports hall of fame that would recognize, honor and salute the outstanding accomplishments/achievements and contributions of our Latino/Hispanic Sports Heritage not only from the United States but also those who came to this country from Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Central and South America and from the vast talent from the Caribbean Islands. The Latin-American International Sports Hall of Fame/Salon de Ia Fama Latinoamericano del Deporte was organized in Laredo, Texas in 1974. At first it was to celebrate, honor and promote local and regional individuals who had excelled at their particular sport but soon it opened the doors to include National and International Professional Athletes. It also recognizes as Sportsman of the Year individuals who continue to preserve and enhance our Latino culture, values and educational opportunities for our youth and who contribute to the betterment of the City of Laredo and South Texas. There have been since its inception an equal recognition of women athletes inductees. It was important to find role models for our youth and the organizers wanted to include all ages, regardless of sex in their programs. The Latin Hall was also created to promote economic development and stimulate business activity in downtown Laredo when local businesses are contracted to provide services to our inductees, their families and guests who visit Laredo during the annual 3-day welcome reception, media luncheon and induction banquet celebration weekend. Through the years. (1975-2014), and with limited amount of funds the organization has, had the opportunity to help the youth of our community with scholarships and other youth activity fundraisers. Plans are to have a Latin Sports International Hall of Fame Museum (downtown) (soon) which will be a first for the United States and to provide clinics (free of charge) to instruct our youth in different sports.


The Latin American International Sports Hall of Fame was founded in 1975 to recognize individuals with good and proper standing in the community, high morals and values and who have excelled in sports and/or have contributed to the promotion of sports and goodwill in the Latino community.

Latin American International Sports Hall of Fame

47th Annual Induction Banquet

Gilberto "Beto" Garza

United High School
4 - Year 3 Sport Letters
1966 -1970
Sam Houston University
1970- 1975

In the annals of Laredo high school sport's
history, there are numerous individuals who come
to mind for their excellence in sports competition.
Athletes like Rarniro Rangel, Freddie Benavides, Irma
Sanchez Webber, Dario Hinojosa Jr., August 0. Hein
and Andy Santos, just to name a few.
But amongst the best of Laredo's elite Latino prep
stars is Gilbert "Beto" Garza. This particular tall
Laredo native was exceptionally talented in every
sport he played. At United High School, Garza
graduated with 12 varsity letters., four each in football, basketball and track.
He was a consistent All-District selection in all sports, setting team records for 28
rebotmds in a single basketball game; most rushing yardage in a single football game at
365 yards and four touchdowns. He also holds the school football career rushing yardage
record with 4300 yards.
After his prep days with the United Longhorns, Garza stepped up to get a college
education and participated in football at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas.
He was a three year starter at tight end and team captain his senior year. Statistically, Garza led the "Bearkats" in pass
receptions his final season in Lone Star Conference play.
To date, he is listed in the career Top Ten in longest receptions, one for 78 yards, the other 68 yards.
He graduated from Sam Houston State and has the distinction of being the first athlete from'Laredo United High School
to accomplish this honor. Also, Garza is the first Latino ever to serve on the Board of Directors and hold the office as
president of the university's Ex-Lettermen's Association.