Benito Rodriguez was born in Aguada, Puerto Rico in 1951. He grew up in Aguada in the barrio Rio Grande. He had two sisters and a brother, and his parents worked in agriculture. After going to school until the fourth grade, he worked in sugar cane fields to help support the family. In the interview, he describes growing up in an agricultural area and that work, not education, was emphasized by his parents. He recalls fondly the cuisine he grew up eating and favorite types of music.
In 1969, when he was eighteen, he decided to move to the United States for work. Following his sister who had settled in Newark, he first lived in Newark and later moved to Keansburg. He describes the difficulties of adjusting to life in America, which for him was made easier by the fact that his sister was already established in Newark. After working at a flour company and a restaurant, he worked at the Roselle Paper Company for forty-four years. The interview is conducted by his grandson, Aziel Rosado.
This oral history interview was conducted as a part of the Latino New Jersey History Project, directed by Dr. Lilia Fernandez.