[Pnews] Cuban 5 - Fernando the Giant

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Thu Feb 27 16:34:11 EST 2014


* *

In each of the Five there is something more or less unique about us. For 
example Ramon is the tallest one, closely followed by René, Fernando 
happens to be the one who is the least in physical stature, while I took 
away second place in that category by beating out Tony by a hair. 
Fernando's "title" in this category is based partly on affection, but 
also for our deeply rooted professional custom of avoiding names, so 
sometimes we would call him "the small one".

What I have said here may seem odd and flippant, but in these days of 
joy and anxiety, with only a few hours separating Fernando from his 
freedom, (and hopefully also for his quick return) I am remembering so 
many signs of greatness inherent in our brother. I am reflecting on the 
irony of first calling him "small" to now referring to him as a giant of 
a person.

When we were arrested, Fernando had several extra reasons to feel 
anguish, pain, frustration...In baseball terms, something Fernando likes 
a lot, he often threw complete games, but this time his mission in Miami 
was that of a short reliever. He was scheduled to return to Cuba soon. 
His wedding was rapidly approaching. His bride, the warrior Rosa who 
sacrificed everything in her life for him, almost had her wedding dress 
on. Even with all this we never heard any lamenting from the giant.

I witnessed when his lawyer from the trial, Joaquin Mendez, told him, 
with all his best professional advice, that given the lower seriousness 
of the charges against him any lawyer would suggest that he opt out and 
be tried separately from the others as the best legal strategy. The 
response from Fernando, as well as René who received a similar 
suggestion, was emphatic and unequivocal.

Fifteen and a half years later, Fernando, like René, will come out of 
prison with his head held high. They gave him nothing. His sentence was 
the maximum possible, and the time discounted for good behavior he 
earned it and by law they had to give it to him.

Today those who love him and admire him will celebrate. We are convinced 
that our struggle will be strengthened and reinforced with another 
standard bearer.

We send Fernando a big embrace and say:

*Congratulations Giant!*

*Thanks for your example!*

Gerardo Hernández Nordelo

Victorville Penitentiary California

February 25, 2014.


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863.9977 www.freedomarchives.org
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