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    National Tattoo Story Day

    September 16th is National Tattoo Story Day and provides a great opportunity to dive into the all the reasons a person may get a particular image, symbol, words or numbers tattooed on their person.

    In the past, there have been many different reasons people got tattoos from hitting acupuncture points to treat back pain or upset stomachs, to branding to mark criminals or slaves, or for usage in rituals and ceremonies from different cultures.

    Reasons for getting a tattoo can be just as diverse as the artwork and style of the tattoos themselves. Today most people spend time thinking about what they want prior to getting the tattoo, and each one has unique story or meaning behind it known only to the person themselves.

    For Engineering Aide Constructionman Janecia Kemp, from Decatur, Ga., her most meaningful tattoo symbolizes love and family.

    “It’s a number seven,” said Kemp. “I’ve thought about this tattoo since I was a kid. My Grammy started this many years ago, all her daughters and granddaughters have the tattoo. At first, I wasn’t of age to get it so my cousins and I were gifted necklaces with the number seven on them. I finally decided to get the tattoo when I was 19 years old.”

    Family is usually the primary reason behind people’s tattoos, but religion is another big reason.

    Air Traffic Controller 2nd Class Joseph Zavala, from Lancaster, Calif., has three tattoos all of which are tributes to his family and a special moment in his life. The first of Zavala’s tattoos has his last name along with a date.

    “The numbers are the day I received the Holy Ghost,” said Zavala. “The day I accepted God.”

    The tattooed symbol in the center of his chest is for his mom which he says, “The symbol is something my mom has tattooed and I got it to signify her so that I always have a piece of her with me.”

    While both are important to Zavala he says the most meaningful tattoo is the one on his arm.

    “It’s a quote I wrote for myself as motivation,” said Zavala. “It says ‘Do it for your family.’ My thought process behind it was trying to figure out what motivates me in life. I learned that my biggest goal in life was to have a family and that if I wanted one I would need to support them as best as I could. When I knew I wanted the tattoo, I was too young and had no money. By the time I was old enough, I was leaving for boot camp and still had no money, so I wrote the quote on my arm for as long as I could until I got it tattooed.”

    Tattoos can often represent changes in person’s life, or even a roadmap of their journeys whether it be a tattoo at each placed visited, or something more abstract known only to the person themselves.

    Kisiah Chandler has lived in Sicily for over 10 years. Her first tattoo was the Hand of Fatima with a blue eye. It represents femininity and protection.

    “I was still in high school when I learned about the hand while traveling to Morocco,” said Chandler. “The blue evil eye is meant to represent my mom.”

    The blue evil eye represents good luck or good karma, the color projects positive energies such as creativity, motivation, and commitment in addition to protection against evil eye.

    In relation to her life’s journey so far, Chandler’s most meaningful tattoo is the Sicilian trinacria or Triscele, which is the symbol of Sicily.

    “I lived in Sicily from the age of 12 through college,” said Chandler. “The island means so much to me and I knew I wanted to get the tattoo when I was 14. Four years later it was my second tattoo and still my favorite piece.”



    Date Taken: 09.16.2022
    Date Posted: 09.27.2022 08:32
    Story ID: 430150
    Location: SIGONELLA, IT 
    Hometown: DECATUR, GA, US
    Hometown: LANCASTER, CA, US

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