Clayton couple who fled Cuba reflect on Castro’s death

Silvia Alonso and her husband Hector. CBS North Carolina photo.

CLAYTON, N.C. (WNCN) — Silvia Alonso and her husband Hector came to the United States from Cuba in 1965.

The couple made their way to Charlotte with just the clothes on their back and no money in search of a new opportunity to start a new life.

“We had to start from the beginning from scratch. Nothing was free. We made a dollar and twenty five cents an hour when we came here in 1965,” said Hector Alonso, who now lives in Clayton.

The couple was only able to bring photos with them from Cuba.

“We couldn’t bring anything. Not even a handkerchief,” said Silvia Alonso.  “It was a tough time. But we were very happy. Very happy because we were free,” she added.

The couple got multiple phone calls Saturday morning from family members in Florida announcing Fidel Castro’s death.

The Alonso family is not celebrating the death of Fidel Castro, although through the years the couple even prayed for Castro to change his ways.

“We prayed for him. Because we hoped he (would) change,” Hector Alonso said.

The Alonso family has not been back to Cuba since 1965 and don’t plan on returning. The family is optimistic for a better future for Cubans now that Fidel Castro is gone.

“He’s a liar. He’s a criminal and he is a thief. His hands are dripping blood, even dead, because of what he did. To lie, to kill and to be a thief. An international thief,” Silvia Alonso said.

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