Juan Almeida left an everlasting legacy

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When the clock struck 11:30 p.m. on the night of September 11, 2009, the Homeland shook with pain. A cardio-respiratory arrest separated from life and death the simple, jovial man, the artist and warrior, Juan Almeida Bosque.

Cuba, immersed in official mourning, took to the streets to pay tribute to the Commander of the Revolution. Along the main arteries, endless lines of children, young people, adults and even the elderly perpetuated the affection, respect, pain and pride of the patriot forever and ever.

At the distance of 12 years, the memory remains fresh and the remembrance of his vast life emerges as the bugambilias in spring, summer or autumn; that which would be his favorite flower and that accompanies him since then in the Mausoleum of the III Frente Oriental.

Evoking him in Juan Almeida’s character, strength, in his gifts as a guerrilla leader and chief, in his loyalty to Fidel, is mixed with the impressive record of deeds and actions during the 82 years of his life until the fateful September 2009.

His memoirs bring to light his days as an attacker to the Moncada Barracks, in prison and exile, as an expeditionary of the Granma yacht, as chief of the III Frente Mario Muñoz Monroe, or chief of staff of the triumphant Rebel Army after the physical disappearance of Camilo Cienfuegos.

After a decade of his departure, his performance as founder and chief of the Central Army, the position of vice minister and minister by statutory substitution of the Revolutionary Armed Forces (FAR), as a member of the Central Committee and the Political Bureau of the PCC since its constitution in 1965. He has been a deputy to the National Assembly of People’s Power since its foundation, president of the Association of Combatants of the Cuban Revolution (ACRC) and vice-president of the Council of State until the time of his death.

Juan Almeida’s exploits are reborn in the Sierra Maestra and in Santiago de Cuba that protected him as a son without being an oriental, but a native of Havana, the stories are reborn in the plains when he talked to everyone, he was a joker and took care to respond to the requests made.

Juan Almeida’s artistic gift

They dance, today, more than 300 melodies made song composed in a self-taught way; chords named La Lupe, Dame un traguito, Este camino largo, Cualquier lugar es mi tierra, Elegía a José Martí, Déjala que baile sola, Qué le pasa a esa mujer, Mi amigo el capitán….

A dozen books are references in the Cuban historiography, written in his own hand, handwriting and experience; texts such as Presidio, Exilio, Desembarco, La Sierra, Por las faldas del Turquino, Contra el agua y el viento, El General en Jefe Máximo Gómez, La Sierra Maestra and more are of obligatory consultation when delving into the revolutionary process…..

In the distance of that September 11, 2009, when the Revolution and the homeland were shaken by the news, Almeida lives in music and literature, in the streets and mountains, in the idiosyncrasy of the Cuban lineage that not even death can destroy.


Adyanis Castillo Licea


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