Cuban immigrants share precious family heirlooms to show history of Cuban exiles by Janey Fugate jfugate@elnuevoherald.com Julia Adán Pelegrín, 71, opened a black suitcase full of faded elegant shirts. Those shirts, she explained, belonged to her father, Emilio Adán Silva, when he was a Supreme Court justice in Cuba, and they represented his life before he and 12 other justices signed a letter denouncing Fidel Castro’s government. Eight years later, his family moved to Miami. Those shirts, Pelegrín says, represent the sacrifice her father made for his family and express the pride she feels. “These are not only memories but items of everyday use when Cuba existed as a nation,” Adán said. “[These shirts] were on the streets of Havana. They lived there.” Such feelings of pride and nostalgia prevailed Saturday in the lobby of the Freedom Tower, when dozens of Cubans gathered to donate or lend objects of historic interest that document their exile experience. More than 300 items — passports, documents, photos, clothes — will be part of an exhibit that will open at the tower in September. The inauguration of the exhibit is a key step in the preservation of Cuban history, said Alina Interián, host of the event and executive director of Miami Dade College cultural affairs. “We want to pay tribute to the people to whom this tower means so much,” said Interián, who also was processed at the Freedom Tower when she arrived from Cuba. Between 1962 and 1974, Cuban refugees were processed at the tower, known as “The Refuge.” It was added to the United States National Register of Historic Places in 1979 and designated a National Historic Landmark in 2008. The exhibit, titled “The Exile Experience: Journey to Freedom,” is a collaboration between Miami Dade College and the Miami Herald Media Company. Its objective is to document, preserve and share the history of the difficulties the exiled Cuban community went through since Fidel Castro’s rise to power. The facility has deserved a project like this for some time, said Luisa Meruelo, 93, who worked for the tower’s immigration service for nine years. “I was always wondering why no one had done something about the refugees here,” Meruelo said. “This is a long story, a beautiful story.” The exhibit is a way to thank the nation that gave them refuge during that turbulent time, she said. “We have to thank the people of the United States for being so generous to us at a very difficult time,” she said. Now, the museum can show items like the first coins earned in this country, the tie that an immigrant was wearing when he arrived, a wedding gown and the tiny dress of a 3-year-old. To the people who wore them, these items are intimately associated with the difficult experience of having to abandon their native country. One of those people was Mercy Advocat, who arrived in 1962 with her brother in the Pedro Pan Operation. That exodus took place between 1960 and 1962 and brought more than 14,000 unaccompanied Cuban children to the United States. “The last thing our parents told us before leaving was that my brother and I should never be separated,” Advocat said. “We then boarded the plane and, when we landed, the first thing they did was separate us — the girls from the boys.” Advocat and her brother eventually were sent to the same foster home in Albuquerque, N.M., and they ended doing what their parents had told them. After two years, they were reunited with their mother in New York. The black-and-white photos Advocat brought to the tower show her mother’s tears when she reunited with her children. She is lending those photos and a doll brought from Cuba — some of her most precious keepsakes — to the museum. She is not ready to part with them yet. “I’m not so old to have to donate them,” she said. © 2014 Miami Herald Media Company. All Rights Reserved. http://www.miamiherald.com Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2014/07/26/v-print/4257131/cuban-immigrants-share-precious.html#storylink=cpy

Susana (Susy) Garrandés Gonzalez

General Information
Current Name
Susy Rodriguez
Current Location
United States of America
Name on Arrival
Susana (Susy) Garrandés Gonzalez
Age on Arrival
10
Date of Arrival
Friday, March 23, 1962
Relocated To
St. Vincent's Orphanage, Vincennes, Indiana
Stayed With
Velasco family-Florida City
Groups
Haiti Pedro Pan
Susana (Susy) has volunteered to help the children of Haiti. Find out how you can help, too.

Susana (Susy)'s Story

Truly blessed for having been raised in the USA!

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Susy, en realidad no se. Pero mi memoria es previlegeada "up to now" y cuando vi que posteastes nuevas fotos, tu cara me parecio conocida. Del colegio no es , yo me gradue de la Universidad de Miami en 1972 y tengo algunos anos mas que tu. Soy contador,mi especialidad es la industria de la musica nunca me he apartado de ella desde que empece en 1964.He tenido negocios y he estado conectado con varias familias disquera inclusive la mia.Tengo mi propia marca de discos y fui presidente de la division latina de Specs Music. Siempre he estado directamente conectado con varios bancos de Miami y es por eso que pienso que nos hemos cruzado anos atraz. No obstante me siento orgulloso de incluirte en el grupo con mis otros hermanos. Afectuosamente. MELVIN

Message by Melvin F Noriega Plasencia | Oct 1st 2009

Susana y Jose Antonio, ustedes deben de estar soñando con Cuba de nuevo, porque en la Avenida Pedro Pan solo podran tomarse un potecito de leche de fria y un coconut maccaroon. Pero si quieren los acompaño en el banquito frente al comedor despues de mis ensayos. Ciao, Carmen

Message by Carmen Valdivia | Oct 1st 2009

Susana , no te va a alcanzar el dinero. Creo que los churros los vamos a tener que dejar para otra ocasión, a menos que yo le eche la coba al mesero y los saquemos de gratis. De otra manera, merendaremos chocolate caliente exclusivamente. José Antonio.

Message by Marcia Caridad Ramos Gonzalez | Oct 1st 2009

Susana, cuanto me alegro que quieras ponerte con el helado, porque esta semana quiero guardar mi $1.40 para comprar papel, bolígrafo, sobres y sellos para escribirle a mi familia en Cuba. La próxima vez yo me pongo con el helado o si prefieres un granizado de sabor de fresa. José Antonio.

Message by Marcia Caridad Ramos Gonzalez | Oct 1st 2009

Prueba 1, 2, 3. Prueba 1, 2, 3. Susana, me falló un mensaje que te escribí y ahora estoy poniendo a prueba la trasmisión. Prueba 1, 2, 3,......

Message by Marcia Caridad Ramos Gonzalez | Oct 1st 2009

Hola, Susana. Aquí me tienes otra vez de paseo por la calzada Pedro Pan Avenue.¡Cuántos recuerdos! Te veo sentada en uno de los bancos, saludando con una sonrisa muy amplia a todos los pedropaneros que se recrean por ella. Saludos, José Antonio.

Message by Marcia Caridad Ramos Gonzalez | Oct 1st 2009

OK. ya acabe de esceribirlos 10 veces lo que me mandaste haser ahora qque mas tengo que haser? tu sabes que estoy muy preocupado por el silencio de YVONNE y YOLI. Y SOBRE todo del santero JOSE ANTONIO? BYE FERNANDO

Message by Fernando L Collado Gonzalez | Oct 1st 2009

Susy one of you or four of you? with the GORGEOUS HAIR?

Message by Fernando L Collado Gonzalez | Oct 1st 2009

Bueno de donde vengo yo de CUBA 4 es mejor que 1 SORRY!!!!!!! manda los otros tres a MARQUITO. EL SEGURO QUE LOS PUEDE USAR.

Message by Fernando L Collado Gonzalez | Oct 1st 2009

Hola, Susy! Por aquí andando, pero en New Balance shoes, porque ya no está el tiempo para chancletas. En un ratico vamos Tony y yo a almorzar fuera aprovechando que tenemos que ir a buscar el van al shop, donde le han hecho un servicio de mantenimiento. Nancy está aquí cuidando a Mami que lo hace hasta mejor que yo porque es mas joven y no está tan quemada. Mami ha vuelto a sentire débil y desanimada. Ya se acerca el 2do aniversario de la muerte de papi y ya te puedes imaginar como se siente. Bueno, ahí te dejo cuidando de los muchachitos que siempre lo necesitan. No sé como se las arregla ese alumno tuyo para caer en problemas. Ponlo a escribir renglones. Abrazos de yoli

Message by Yolanda Cardenas Ganong | Oct 1st 2009

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