After six months of preparations, 71 persons attended the first ever reunion
of Pedro Pan in California this past September 25 2005. It was an unqualified success.
Two guest speakers accented the afternoon: Hector Carrion Sr. and Dr. Dulce
Hector is the son of Angel and Nina Carrion the house parents of Casa Carrion,
which opened in December of 1960 to receive the first group of Pedro Pans. Though not a Pedro Pan, Hector worked at Casa Carrion
helping his parents and has many insightful stories about the early days of Pedro Pan and the kids who came to Casa Carrion.
Dr. Dulce Maria Martinez offered a different perspective as the parent of
two daughters who are Pedro Pan. She explained the state of affairs affecting the lives of Cuban kids; and why our parents
made the difficult decision to send us to a foreign country by ourselves. The audience was spell bound, as Dr. Martinez detailed
the process of acquiring a visa waiver. She pointed out the repercussions it could have on the lives of our parents as well
as the persons who furnished the visas and the airline tickets to bring the kids out.
The highlight of the reunion was the Pedro Pan introductions. Every Pedro
Pan in attendance stood in front of their Pedro Pan family and gave a brief personal history. This was also the most emotional
part of the reunion as many of us recalled the difficult experiences shared by many of us.
Our heartfelt thanks to the Rodriguez, family for furnishing the locale and
hosting the first ever reunion of Pedro Pan in California.
Until we meet again!