Message from Pedro Pan Eloísa Echazábal. Below the link to the Miami Dade College announcement dated July 8th regarding the upcoming Freedom Tower exhibit about the Cuban exile experience. This exhibit will be launched in mid-September. The first exile focus will be on the Pedro Pan exodus. Most of us who reunited with our parents in Miami remember visiting the Freedom Tower for the services the U.S. government made available to the newly arriving Cuban exiles. The Pedro Pan exhibit will last about two years. Miami Dade College and The Miami Herald Media Company invited me to collaborate with them when the plans were first developed about two years ago, and I was ecstatic with the opportunity. Also collaborating with their memorabilia and photos are Operation Pedro Pan Group Inc.organization, Barry University Archives and Special Collections, University of Miami Cuban Heritage Collection and Florida International University Libraries. As soon as the next official announcement comes out, I will forward. In the meantime, I would like to let you know that a "collecting day" is being planned for Saturday, July 26th, from 12 to 4 p.m. at the Freedom Tower. This is the day when Pedro Pans will have the opportunity to bring memorabilia regarding our Pedro Pan days to be loaned to the exhibit. Required receipts and documentation will be available there. Courtesy parking on the open lot across the street south of the Tower. Entrance on N.E. 5th street. Just let the attendant know you are coming to the Tower to bring your items. This is a great opportunity to showcase our experience. Again, as additional announcements are released, I'll forward.

Justo J Ruiz Manresa

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Justo J's Story

Arrived with my younger brother Leandro & older sister Laida to Florida City .

A few weeks later we were the " first " group to be sent to Sacred Heart Home orphanage located in Pueblo , Colorado . On our way there we transferred to another plane at Chicago Airport . During this stop the Peter Pan group met president Kennedy's brother , then United States Attorney General Robert Kennedy.

At the orphanage we were treated very good by everyone , especially Sister Judith & the Medina family which always attempted to take us out on weekends , both were very loving.

Also for that short time that we were there, the Vidal brothers & the Calienes brothers became very close & a special friendship developed.

As time passes i have struggled with this experience & have asked myself many times," what would i do if it was in reverse ?" & have come with this conclusion , " definitely YES , the extent of the sacrifice that my parents made in order for us , our children, and future generations to come to live in FREEDOM ,was well worth it ! "

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Hola Justo! Great to see you on this site. Missed you three at the reunion last year. Hope you are well!

Message by Ada Diaz Perez | Oct 4th 2013

To:Manuel A Gutierrez your email is invalid also regarding your question: The Calienes is their last name. They were only two brothers & i only remember the youngest , his first name is Jose, so his full name would be : Jose Calienes.

Message by Justo J. Ruiz | Sep 20th 2013

I liked your entry and I updated my Pedro Pan website - you can find it at with data for all pedropans. Do you know the Calienes' second last name? I would like to complete their entries. was it Alicia, Jorge Luis and Raul? Thanks for any info you can provide.

Message by Manuel A. Gutiérrez | Sep 19th 2013

Welcome, Justo. My sentiments exactly. I couldn't have said it better. By the way, do you remember if any photos were taken of the encounter between the late Attorney General Robert Kennedy and your Pedro Pan group in the Chicago stopover? I realize that remembering is a long shot because some 50 years have transpired, but if there were any taken I would like to start a search in the late Senator's archives for it. Do you recall the date of the flight from Miami to Colorado? Please, let me know. Once again, welcome and best wishes to you and your loved ones. Warm regards, José Antonio.

Message by Jose Antonio Amaro Reyes | Sep 14th 2013

Justo J has updated their profile.

Status update | Sep 13th 2013

Welcome to the Pedro Pan network, Justo.

Message by Susy Rodriguez | Sep 13th 2013

Justo J has uploaded new photos.

Status update | Sep 12th 2013

Justo J has updated their profile.

Status update | Sep 12th 2013

Justo J has joined the Pedro Pan Network. Please welcome them!

Status update | Sep 12th 2013

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