Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Keroauc -- On the Road: Character "Terry" died at age 92, August, 2013

Beatrice Kozera, left, and her sister Angie in Selma, Calif., in 1947. (Beatrice Kozera Estate )

Beatrice Kozera, the Los Angeles-born woman whose fleeting relationship with novelist Jack Kerouac was chronicled in 'On the Road,' - the book that defined a generation - died in August 2013. 

She was 92. The woman also known as Bea Franco and to readers as 'Terry, the Mexican girl' died in August, 2013, in Lakewood of natural causes, family friend Tim Hernandez said on Monday.

Kozera learned only a few years before her death that her 15-day relationship with Kerouac in the farm-worker labor camps of Selma in 1947 was featured in his famous Beat Generation novel and eventually a Hollywood movie, in which actress Alic Braga played her, Hernandez said.

Hernandez tracked down Kozera while he was researching her story for the book  “Manana Means Heaven.”

He said he interviewed Kozera several times after finding letters and a postcard she had written to Kerouac at the New York Public Library. He showed them to her family, who recognized her handwriting.

'As far as she was concerned she was a normal, ordinary person who at one point in her life met a man,' Hernandez said. 'She never knew that this gentleman Kerouac ever became anything.'

Kozera spent most of her early years following her farmworker family in California’s fields and eventually settled in Fresno.

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