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Taxiboat Family Arrives
Tuesday, June 21, 2005   By: Juan Paxety

Sailed a 1948 Mercury taxi into the Florida Straits

The family that set sail for freedom in a converted 1948 Mercury taxi has finally arrived in the United States. The Miami Herald reports the family of Rafael Diaz Rey flew into Ft. Lauderdale from Naval Station Guantanamo yesterday. The family was allowed to stay in the U.S. because most of the members had already secured entry visas. fidel simply would not allow them to leave his worker's paradise.

''I am a free person,'' said Pablo Alonso Valdez, 15, practicing his first sentences of English in the United States.

Because Pablo was nearing the age to serve in the Cuban military, the Castro government did not allow him to leave. His mother, Dr. Nivia Valdez, was not allowed to leave because the Cuban government requires five years of service for medical personnel.

Rafael had tried to escape on three previous occasions.

The ten other people in the taxi were sent back because some U.S. bureaucrat decided they were in no danger of persecution from the Cuban government. What foolishness.


(c)1968- today j.e. simmons or michael warren