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

María de la Concepción Medina Pérez

General Information
Current Name
María C. Monteagudo
Current Location
United States of America
Name on Arrival
María de la Concepción Medina Pérez
Age on Arrival
14
Date of Arrival
Tuesday, October 24, 1961
Relocated To
Kendall

María de la Concepción's Story

This person has not yet filled out their story about their flight as a part of Operation Pedro Pan.

María de la Concepción's News Feed

Leave a public message for María de la Concepción.

Hola Maria Conchita: No sé si te recuerdas de mi. Soy tu tocaya, Conchita Gutierrez. Creo que no te veo desde la boda de tu sobrina. Hasta hace año y medio me contactaba con tu hermana de vez en cuando pero ya me retiré del VA y se de ella cuando visito a Gloria, la mamá de Jorge Moral. Como estan tu y tu familia. Me imagino que ya seas abuela. Yo tengo un solo nieto de 4 años que me tiene viajando a San Francisco cada vez que puedo pues Annie y su esposo se mudaron pare allá. Bueno, mandame unas lineas cuando puedas.

Message by Conchita Gutierrez Cuesta | Jun 28th 2010

Querida Mary: Al fin pude contactar y "upload" algunas fotos.....me quedan dos de este mes de la reunión de la Antiguas Alumnas del Apostolado.....pienso ponerlas mañana. Un beso, Otmara

Message by Otmara Capote Gonzalez | Jun 27th 2009

Hi Maria, No vas a creerme pero estaba buscando fotos viejas y me encontre una foto de las Dominicas Americas no se si era Kinder or Preprimario y atras de las fotos mi mama le puso el nombre de todos los niños y niñas que estan en la foto y hay un nombre que dice Maria C. Medina, me imagino que esa eres tu. Voy a ver como la scan y ver si te la puedo mandar por email a ver si te puedes identificar. Saludos

Message by Frank ( Paco ) Echeverria | Jun 13th 2009

Querida Maria: Posiblemente alguna vez nadé con Mari Delfi....A Roxana Dacosta la vi cuando la muerte de Elli Chovel, no sé si ustedes fueron a la Ermita ese día pero fué muy emotivo....Elli conocía a todo el mundo y por su nombre (no sé cómo lo hacía) pero su amor por el Grupo Peter Pan fué muy especial........ Mi teléfono es (305)551-2269....usualmente por la noche estoy en casa (menos los fines de semana). Un beso, Otmara

Message by Otmara Capote | Jun 9th 2009

Hi Maria te dire que tu hermana tiene razon yo nadaba por el Cazadores con Otmara y Roxana y los primos de ella que eran apellido Molina y vivian al lado del Cazadores.Yo nada contra los Diaz Mazarredo, el primo,Casanova. Ellos eran compañeros mios en los Maristas. El coach del CYC vivia en la esquina de mi casa creo que el apellido era Muñoz en varias ocaciones el me dijo que porque no me iba para el CYC. mi Kindedaten y Pre-Primario yo los hice en las Dominicas Americas y despues cruce para los Maristas. Yo tenia un compañero que vivia en la misma esquina de San Carlos y Cid.El papa tenia la bodega que hacia esquina enfrente de los Jesuitas. Saludos

Message by Frank ( Paco ) Echeverria | Jun 9th 2009

06/08/09 Hey Maria: Ayer estuve en el almuerzo de Antiguas Alumnas del Apostolado, una de las "muchachas" me dijo que ustedes iban a las Dominicas Americanas....pero que aparentemente Mari Delfi es un poquito mayor que yo. Yo tengo 64.....Como puedo hacer para enviar mi foto y muchas fotos que tengo de Florida City??? Please advice, Cariños, Otmara

Message by Otmara Capote | Jun 8th 2009

Hola Maria: Me "suena" mucho el nombre de Mari Delfi Medina....imagínate son tantos años... yo estudié en el Colegio Apostolado y nadaba por el Club Cazadores....con Roxana Dacosta, Paquito Echeverria, et.....Sería un gusto poder conversar. Tu llegaste a Miami el día de mi cumpleaños!!! Un fuerte abrazo Cienfueguero!!!! Otmara

Message by Otmara Capote | Jun 5th 2009

Hi Maria, como estas gracias por el mensaje, el nombre de tu papa me parece que lo conozco pero no se de donde. Dices que viste la foto mia en el anuario de los Maristas, de cual año. Son Uds de Cienfuegos, mas a menos tenemos la misma edad. Si son de cienfuegos donde vivian. Yo vivia a una cuadra de Obras Publicas en la calle San Carlos. Veo que te comunicastes con Otmara Capote, yo la conozco a ella de Cienfuegos. Bueno parece que te he hecho muchas preguntas. Dejame saber algunas a ver si nos conocemos de algun lugar.

Message by Paco Echeverria | Jun 5th 2009

TU PRIMO PAQUIN DESEA HACER CONTACTO CONTIGO Y CON LA FAMILIA

Message by FRANK PÉREZ ÁLVAREZ | May 16th 2009

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