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Escape from Castro’s Cuba: Jacksonville’s Refuge for Cuban Children, 1961-1962

November 19, 2013 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Old St. Andrews
317 A Philip Randolph Boulevard
Jacksonville, FL 32202
Free, but contributions always welcome.
Jacksonville Historical Society
Escape from Castro's Cuba: Jacksonville's Refuge for Cuban Children, 1961-1962 @ Old St. Andrews | Jacksonville | Florida | United States

When Castro took power in Cuba people became very nervous and wanted to leave the country, but were unable to leave.  It did become possible for unaccompanied children to leave and many parents made the agonizing decision to send their children to the United States alone.  In the end, 14,048 children came and their flight to this country became known as Operation Pedro Pan (Peter Pan.)  Father Walsh met these children in Miami and coordinated camps to care for the children all over the country. One such camp was Camp St. Johns near Switzerland, Florida, today known as Marywood.

Our speaker, Jose Ramirez, was one of the boys who lived there and attended Bishop Kenny High School, graduating in 1963.  He will be discussing his experience as a Pedro Pan and life at Camp St. Johns.

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