Last Cuban Survivor of the Bombing of Guernica Dies in Cuba

Jorge Eduardo Elguezábal, the last Cuban survivor of the bombing of Guernica, died recently at age 86 in the central city of Cienfuegos, as announced by Cuban television on Thursday, April 26, the day that marked the 75th anniversary of the massacre in that Basque city.

From Cuba News and CubaDebate: Born in 1926, Jorge Eduardo traveled from Cienfuegos to the Basque Country accompanied by his mother and siblings in 1932. His family was from Guernica, and lived on Asilo Kalzada Street. There, he went to school and stayed for several years, until the bombing wiped out the city. “He was just a 10-year-old by on April 26, 1937, day of the bombing,” pointed out the Cuban television story.

On April 26, 1937, airplanes of the German Condor Legion, under the command of lieutenant colonel Wolfram von Richthofen, bombed the locality for over three hours, resulting in 126 deaths, according to the most recent estimates by historians. More than 70 percent of buildings in Guernica, then inhabited by some 6,000 people, was destroyed, mainly by the fire caused by the large amount of incendiary bombs dropped on the small rural town.

From Juventud Rebelde: Jorge Eduardo Elguezábal Martínez was born in central Soledad, Cienfuegos, on October 22, 1925. He witnessed the attack on Guernica 70 years ago, which is excellently reflected in the famous painting by Pablo Picasso of the total destruction of the town and as a call for peace.

[In an interview with Julio Martínez Molina, Elguezábal said] “My grandparents, parents, brothers and I left for Spain in 1932 due to an illness of my grandfather who was born in La Coruña, Galicia. He was suffering the effects of the hard work as a blacksmith which was important at the time and solved a lot of problems. Work with the forge and the hammer are very violent. The doctors recommended a cold climate and we remained in the United States for four years before leaving for Europe. We stayed in a Galician town for three years before arriving in Guernica in 1935. I was the youngest of the three brothers and ten years old.”

For original article, see http://www.cubanews.ain.cu/2012/0427Cuban-Survivor.htm in English, and http://www.cubadebate.cu/noticias/2012/04/26/murio-en-cienfuegos-el-ultimo-sobreviviente-cubano-del-bombardeo-a-guernica/ in Spanish

For full interview with Elguezábal, see http://www.walterlippmann.com/docs1707.html

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