This week an Iberia Airliner left Havana, landed in Madrid and found an obviously desperate Cuban stowaway. The 23 year old Cuban man named Adonis G.B. was curled in the landing gear, crushed to death. He joins an estimate of 50-70,000 Cubans dying (literally) to leave Fidel Castro and Che Guevara’s handiwork. Almost two million Cubans have made it out alive.
On Christmas Eve, 2000, a British Airliner opened its landing gear near Heathrow airport after taking off from Havana and out dropped two corpses, frozen solid. They were shortly identified as 16 year old Miguel Fonseca and 17 year old Alberto Vázquez.
“Crazy blokes!” probably huffed some of the passengers, oblivious or uncaring that all those pounds they’d just spent on their Cuban vacation went straight into the coffers of the Stalinist military and police who drove the Cuban boys to such deadly desperation. Also oblivious or uncaring that prior to the reign of that Stalinist regime they succor with tourist money, people were almost as desperate to enter Cuba as they are now to escape.
On June 4th 1969, an Iberia Airliner, just landed in Madrid from Havana, was taxiing to the terminal when the frozen corpse of 16 year old Jorge Pérez dropped out. His partner in escape, Armando Socorras, 17, somehow survived in what Spanish medical authorities described as a form of “human hibernation.”
On July 21st 1991, the frozen corpses of Alexis Hernández 19, and José Acevedo 20, plopped onto Madrid airport’s tarmac from the landing gear of another Iberia Airlines flight...
On August 22, 1999, the frozen cadaver of Felix Julian Garcia dropped from a British airliner onto the tarmac of Gatwick airport, as it landed from Havana.
A month later, odor led officials of Italy’s Varese Airport to the decomposed corpse of Roberto García Quinta in the landing gear of an Alitalia Airlines flight that had landed from Santiago Cuba ten days earlier.
In July 2002, the frozen and battered corpse of a of 20 year old Cuban identified only as Wildredo D. was found in the landing gear of a Lufthansa Airliner at Dusseldrof airport.
In December 2002 a 20 year old Cuban who worked at Havana airport snuck into a pressurized compartment of Canadian Airliner’s, just under the cabin. He scurried out alive in Montreal airport 4 hours later.
Humberto Fontova holds an M.A. in Latin American Studies from Tulane University and is the author of four books including his latest, The Longest Romance; The Mainstream Media and Fidel Castro. For more information and for video clips of his Television and college speaking appearances please visit www.hfontova.com.