When Kids Crossed the Border with the U.S. Government’s Help

In the 1960s, Operation Pedro Pan Brought Children Like Me Out of an Unstable Cuba

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The images in recent weeks of minors crossing the border, unaccompanied and scared, fleeing violence and uncertain futures in their home countries, many seeking their relatives already in the United States, brought back memories of my own journey here in 1961 at the age of 6 on a plane filled with children. The Cuban Revolution my parents had supported had abandoned its promise of democracy. Schools, including the one I attended—Nuestra Señora de Lourdes, near our home in La Vibora—had been shut down. A U.S. invasion had failed; many of …

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