Cuban-American pediatrician remembers his roots
Here at Babalú, we never grow tired of reading Cuban-American-done-good stories. Here is the latest one.
Cuba-born pediatrician talks about his life
Boarding the plane, a 14-year-old Felix Regueira cried, looking back at his family, not knowing if he would ever see them again.
Life changed in a matter of months. Cuba had a new leader, Fidel Castro, and the only hope Regueira's parents had for their son was to send him to America.
That was 47 years ago, and telling the story still makes the now 62-year-old Victoria pediatrician choke up.
America is what made him, he said, and he wants others, specifically the young generation of Hispanics, to know that anything is possible.
"I had to be all by myself," Regueira said, tears rolling down his cheeks as though he had just left Cuba all over again. "My parents had to stay there. My brother, too."
The changes happened so fast, he said. A communist country would not have allowed for him to be all that he could be, and if his parents ever wanted him to succeed, he'd have to leave before he turned 15 and was drafted into the military.
Regueira spent the first couple of weeks in Spain with his uncle until he could move to Florida and live with a foster family.
Soon after that, his mother, father and brother arrived in Florida.
They had to start from scratch, though they had lived comfortably and successfully in Cuba until Castro came in.
"Communism did not allow me to have choices," he said.
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