From our Bureau of Billionaire Cuban-American Philanthropists
When you flee communism and arrive in the U.S. penniless as a teenager without parents and some years later the adopted son to whom you lent money so he could start a little shop-online business becomes one of the richest men in the world, amazingly wonderful things can happen.
Here is one such amazingly wonderful thing.
Loosely translated from Ciber Cuba
Miguel Bezos, adoptive father of Amazon billionaire founder Jeff Bezos, made a historic $ 12 million donation to a Wilmington, Delaware, Catholic school that educated him when he came to the United States as a child, as part of the call. Operation Pedro Pan.
In this way, Bezos thanked the Salesianum School for welcoming him in that complicated moment of his life, after escaping from Fidel Castro’s revolution along with more than 14,000 minors, brought to the United States through the aforementioned program, organized by the Catholic Church. with the help of the US government.
In Miami, the facilities that received the island’s children were overwhelmed, so Bezos was sent to Wilmington, with no knowledge of English, a story that his son Jeff Bezos has repeatedly highlighted as an example of personal effort.
The multi-million dollar donation will be taken to establish a scholarship in memory of Father James P. Byrne, who oversaw the home for immigrant Cuban children who attended Salesianum in the early 1960s. The donation was announced on June 16, and seeks to honor to priest Byrne, who died last year.
Qualified applicants who live in Wilmington and are the children of immigrants to the United States will be given preference in recognition of the school’s “legacy of educating generations of immigrants,” said a press release from the institution. The scholarship will finance 24 students.
“This extraordinary gift is one of the largest a Catholic high school has ever received; and most importantly, it will allow Salesianum to radically advance its mission of providing access to students regardless of their financial situation, ”said the center.
Time and again, Jeff Bezos, the richest man in the world, has highlighted the role his adoptive father played in shaping him. “With words and actions, you taught me to be demanding, to laugh, to work hard, to be kind, to love, seriously and lightly. I am the luckiest son in the world and I love you, ”he said in a post on Sunday for Father’s Day.
Last year, for the same occasion, Bezos recalled the trajectory of his father: “He came here from Cuba only when he was 16 years old and did not speak English. He adopted me when I was four years old and never looked back. “
According to him, Miguel had a lot of “determination” to get ahead and got a scholarship to college in Albuquerque, the city where he met Bezos’s mother, who had brought him into the world when he was a 17-year-old high school student. .