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1980: Mariel and how it impacted me

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In 1980, the Mariel boatlift began:

“On April 20, 1980, the Castro regime announces that all Cubans wishing to emigrate to the U.S. are free to board boats at the port of Mariel west of Havana, launching the Mariel Boatlift.

The first of 125,000 Cuban refugees from Mariel reached Florida the next day.”

Mariel brought thousands to the US and most of them turned out to be very good additions to Florida.   Unfortunately, there were some criminal elements but they were a very small number.

Years later, most of the “Marielitos” have contributed much to Miami and the US.

For me, Mariel was a turning point in rediscovering my Cuban roots.   It reconnected me with the Cuban cause, specially as I saw boats and people leaving the same island that I left as a kid in 1964.



Written by scantojr

April 20, 2015 at 7:00 am

Posted in US Cuba issues

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