If you didn’t know Manuel Rojas, the owner of East L.A.’s El Tepeyac who passed away earlier this month at the age of 79, you’re probably going to wish you did after watching this video tribute to the late, great innovator of gargantuan burritos. According to Daily News L.A., 2,500 people filled his Montebello memorial service on Tuesday, while several long-time employees and fans celebrated his life at the restaurant. The pastor recalled, “I never saw a man who got to kiss so many women in front of their husbands, and got away with it.” Meanwhile, a 19-year veteran of El Tepeyac’s staff recalled the departed owner’s sharp sense of humor.
“There was nobody like him,” she says. “He fired me every day…he would embarrass us, he would tell everybody he changed our diapers.”
Take a look below to see fans, family, and friends share their dearest memories of the man while delving into the origins of the best-selling “Manny Special” and “Hollenbeck” burrito along the way.