The other day hearing the news media attacking Honduras practically brought me to tears. This little country, which many consider just a banana republic, was responsible in 1960 for saving my sister's life.
My sister, Rose, was at the time a student at the University of Havana, and had become involved with a group protesting Castro; she even became romantically involved with the handsome leader. Long story but, the result was: there was an informer that betrayed the group.
Castro's thugs wanted the leader; my sister and family helped find him a hiding place until other people got him out of the country. One night at midnight (fall, 1960), my home was invaded by seven militiamen (dressed in fatigue uniforms -- that dreaded olive green); the leader was a very large black bold headed man, Crespulo was his name.
Crespulo came inside our bedroom pointing a machine gun at two young girls (my sister was 20, I was 15) and asking who is Rose? She was questioned for hours, but gave them no valuable information. My parents were terrified; they had no idea of her involvement until then.
We spent the rest of the night in a family meeting to plan how to help Rose. My father found people in the countryside that would hide her for a while. Meanwhile he continued to search among his connections as businessman, when finally the HONDURAS EMBASSY came to the rescue.
At that time, Castro still respected the embassies. She lived at the embassy for about two months. My mother and I visited her being very careful no one followed us (taking different routes, taxis, buses). We never told the police where she was; they would watch our home, and Crespulo made several visits.
Eventually, on mid January 1961, the Honduras Ambassador escorted my sister to the plane leaving for Honduras. She spent about a week there and then was given a visa to the U.S.
May God bless Honduras and its people!Elvira Fernandez Hasty, Ph.D. (Retired Chemistry Professor) Cuban American---came to the USA via Pedro Pan Children’s program in January 1961.